A team of researchers from universities and institutes around the world have created the first electronic textile containing graphene, a carbon allotrope and the thinnest substance capable of conducting electricity.
The scientists successfully embedded transparent, flexible graphene electrodes into fibers similar to those in the textile industry. They made the graphene using a growth method called chemical vapor deposition (CVD) on copper foil, and then transferred the graphene from the copper foil to a polypropylene fiber commonly used in the textile industry.
In addition to its electricity-conducting attributes, it’s also very strong and flexible, opening up the possibility of integrating computer, phone and MP3 player functions directly into apparel and accessories. Future uses could support GPS systems, biomedical monitoring, personal security and communication tools for the sensory impaired.