On Tuesday, November 25th, she is set to publicly defend her dissertation, the first on interactive textile structures, at Chalmers. A dissertation that will be a springboard for the new resource smart textiles that don't even have to touch the body to give measurable results.
In the beginning of the 21st century, Lena Berglin started dismantling two interactive products, among them an intelligent glove, capable of transmitting communication. That marked the start of her research. When she assembled the parts a whole new textile product was created, an ECG tanktop. Prior to this she had gotten in touch with the Work Life Institute and the Medical Technology department at the UmeåUniversity. Jointly, they have developed a concept with garments for health monitoring. The products are a tanbtop, a cardigen and a belt that measure ECG, muscular activity and breathing frequency.
"I wanted to do something that gave a positive health effect and made life easier," explains Lena Berglin and continues "people who have experienced a cardiac arrest and are worried about getting back into exercising find it easier doing that with a shirt like this."
The cardigan was developed because it is easy to wear on top of other clothes. The garment then measures at the wrist, and the box can be stored in the cardigan pocket. The cuffs are woven according to a three layer principle and a small unit contains both the battery and transmitter. The ECG shirt will hopefully be commercially sold within a year.
"The American market is very interested. They want the technology and have a customer that is used to paying for health care."
Smart Textiles Make Life Easier
In her dissertation, Lena Berglin defines smart textiles, as well as what new methods there are for developing work with smart textiles. She talks about textiles that react to their surroundings based on special scenarios. Simultaneously, smart textiles can be split inte three groups, three levels.
"The first group is hybrids, which really means that the electronic components are sown or woven into the textile. Many people don't consider these smart textiles, but I call it the simplest form, because if the technology compoment is small enough, they work perfectly well."
Lena Berglin describes the other group where the fabric is the carrier of whatever reacts. It might be a network of electrodes being connected. The third group is the one she has dedicated most of her research to, the interactive smart textiles. The unifying theme of Lena Berglin's projects is electroactive textiles. With the help of metals she creates surfaces on the textiles, surfaces that transmit a current. The breathing monitoring textiles she has developed can, for example, be used for helping children born prematurely.
"My research has always been very applicable. I combine technology and design."
She was trained at the School of Textiles herself. After that she got a master's degree in interaction design at Chalmers, and after a few years working she returned to the School of Textiles and Chalmers to do research on smart textiles.
Lena Berglin explains the advantages with incorporating function into a garment.
"You won't need a lot of extra equipment. You are wearing the garment and fabrics are good to work with. It is functional."
Smart textiles are, in other words, more than just textiles. The concept is used in several important fields; health care uniforms, sportswear and protective garments, and also interior decorating, construction and automobiles, or even in biomedical implants.
"The smart textiles have attracted a lot of attention lately, and you might even say they are at their peak right now. That's why it's important to live up to the demands. We still have a few problems that we need to find solutions to," explains Lena Berglin.
The fourth group she descibes as the resource smart textiles of the future.
"That is where I want to continue with my research. It is the new generation of multifunctional fibres that enable resource saving smart products, where everything is integrated into the fabric."Like Science Fiction
"This is where the fun begins," she smiles.
Among other things, she has glanced toward a development project with other researchers in organic electronics at Linköping University.
"We are looking at how to, through textiles, purify saltwater and make it drinkable, clean air and keep fabric cold on the outside and warm on the inside. In the hospital environment of the future you might not have to wear the ECG shirt, it might be positioned somewhere in the room and measure from there," explains Lena Berglin.
"We also want to integrate the technology into the fabric manufacturing process. That's why we at present are looking at the weaving system itself. A student at the School of Textiles, Siw Eriksson, has found new ways of weaving complex structures that are very useful for the structures I cover in my dissertation. When working with these kinds of things, you notice that you always have to go back and delve deeper into the technology. Because that is the basis of it all. It is there that we can be creative and find the solution."Public Defence of Dissertation
Annie Andréasson | idw
Decoding cement's shape promises greener concrete
08.12.2016 | Rice University
Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D
08.12.2016 | DOE/Brookhaven National Laboratory
Physicists of the University of Würzburg have made an astonishing discovery in a specific type of topological insulators. The effect is due to the structure of the materials used. The researchers have now published their work in the journal Science.
Topological insulators are currently the hot topic in physics according to the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Only a few weeks ago, their importance was...
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
09.12.2016 | Life Sciences
09.12.2016 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
09.12.2016 | Health and Medicine