Home / Knowledge / News / Apparel/Garments / Tees may recharge your mobile & iPad in future!
Tees may recharge your mobile & iPad in future!
30
Jun '12
Over the years, the telephone has gone mobile, from the house to the car to the pocket. The University of South Carolina's Xiaodong Li envisions even further integration of the cell phone – and just about every electronic gadget, for that matter – into our lives.

He sees a future where electronics are part of our wardrobe.

"We wear fabric every day," said Li, a professor of mechanical engineering at University of South Carolina (USC). "One day our cotton T-shirts could have more functions; for example, a flexible energy storage device that could charge your cell phone or your iPad."

Li is helping make the vision a reality. He and post-doctoral associate Lihong Bao have just reported in the journal Advanced Materials how to turn the material in a cotton T-shirt into a source of electrical power.

Starting with a T-shirt from a local discount store, Li's team soaked it in a solution of fluoride, dried it and baked it at high temperature. They excluded oxygen in the oven to prevent the material from charring or simply combusting.

The surfaces of the resulting fibers in the fabric were shown by infrared spectroscopy to have been converted from cellulose to activated carbon. Yet the material retained flexibility; it could be folded without breaking.

"We will soon see roll-up cell phones and laptop computers on the market," Li said. "But a flexible energy storage device is needed to make this possible."

The once-cotton T-shirt proved to be a repository for electricity. By using small swatches of the fabric as an electrode, the researchers showed that the flexible material, which Li's team terms activated carbon textile, acts as a capacitor. Capacitors are components of nearly every electronic device on the market, and they have the ability to store electrical charge.

Moreover, Li reports that activated carbon textile acts like double-layer capacitors, which are also called a supercapacitors because they can have particularly high energy storage densities.

But Li and Bao took the material even further than that. They then coated the individual fibers in the activated carbon textile with “nanoflowers” of manganese oxide. Just a nanometer thick, this layer of manganese oxide greatly enhanced the electrode performance of the fabric. "This created a stable, high-performing supercapacitor," said Li.

This hybrid fabric, in which the activated carbon textile fibers are coated with nanostructured manganese oxide, improved the energy storage capability beyond the activated carbon textile alone. The hybrid supercapacitors were resilient: even after thousands of charge-discharge cycles, performance didn't diminish more than 5 percent.

"By stacking these supercapacitors up, we should be able to charge portable electronic devices such as cell phones," Li said.

Li is particularly pleased to have improved on the means by which activated carbon fibers are usually obtained. "Previous methods used oil or environmentally unfriendly chemicals as starting materials," he said. "Those processes are complicated and produce harmful side products. Our method is a very inexpensive, green process."

University of South Carolina (USC)

Must ReadView All

Textiles | On 24th May 2017

Maharashtra state passes State GST bill

The Maharashtra Assembly has passed unanimously the State Goods and...

Apparel/Garments | On 24th May 2017

G-III Apparel enters into license agreement with PVH

G-III Apparel Group has entered into a multi-year license agreement...

Textiles minister Smriti Irani at a press conference with minister of state for textiles, Ajay Tamta, the principal director general (M&C), PIB, AP Frank Noronha and other dignitaries. Courtesy: PIB

Apparel/Garments | On 23rd May 2017

Special package for knitwear coming soon: Irani

Union textiles minister Smriti Irani said that the government of...

Interviews View All

Hannah Lane
Redress

Encouragement from brands will motivate supply chains to become more...

Jim Desai
Blaiva Fabricaa

Fashion industry likely to remain labour-intensive in coming years

Jurgen Gauger
Spreadshirt

‘Buying crowdsourced or creative designs are much more appealing to the...

Iago Castro Asensio
RCfil Distribuciones S.L.

Iago Castro Asensio, International Business Manager of RCfil...

Ashok Desai
Bombay Textile Research Association

Bombay Textile Research Association (BTRA) is a leading name in textile...

Kerem Durdag
Biovation II LLC

Kerem Durdag, CEO, Biovation II LLC, provides an insight into future...

Madhu Jain
Madhu Jain

She grew up in the walled city of Old Delhi, completed her studies, and...

Sanjukta Dutta
Sanjukta's Studio

<b>Sanjukta Dutta</b> creates unique garments by clubbing prints of...

Rupa Sood and Sharan Apparao
Nayaab

Nayaab, an exhibition meant to celebrate Indian weaves, is in its second...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

news category


Related Categories:
May 2017

May 2017

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

SUBSCRIBE


Browse Our Archives

GO


E-News Insight
Subscribe Today and Get the
Latest News Update in Your Mail Box.
Advanced Search