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Emerging opportunities with smart e-textiles featured at IFAI
Aug '09
The Industrial Fabics Association International (IFAI) and the Safety and Protective Products Division of IFAI announces a new continuing education program held at the annual IFAI Expo in San Diego, Calif., "Smart E-textile Solutions," September 22, 2009, 8:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

"Smart E-textile Solutions" will give industry members insight into the latest research, materials and market forecasts for e-textiles. The session also features a panel discussion examining the issues of application development, productions and barriers to market.

Isa Hoffmann, Ph.D., CEO at IHOFMANN International, presents "World Trends & Innovations in Smart Textiles," an overview of trends in the global E-textile market, including existing and potential markets, barriers to success and innovation drivers. www.ihofmann.com

Mike Ellis, Ph.D., Associate Professor at Virginia Tech, presents "Multifunctional Woven Cloth for Fuel Cell Gas Diffusion Media." Ellis will discuss a promising type of proton exchange membrane fuel cells for ultra-lightweight applications called a ribbon fuel cell. www.vt.edu

Jeremiah Slade, Business Area Manager in the product develepoment laboratories at InfoSciTex, has a broad range of experience in the development of textile materials and structures that feature embedded functionality. During the presenation, "Methods for Fabricating Broadloom Mesh Networks and Allowing Electrical Connections to be Formed Across Discontinuities," Slade will describe the selection of e-textile yarns, which demonstrate the appropriate electrical and mechanical properties, and the weaving of these yarns into the rip-stop layers of a broadloom fabric. The techniques developed for making electrical connections that bridge seam boundaries to form continuous network paths that are shielded from electromagnetic interference will be reviewed.

Eric Gans, Director of Systems Engineering at Physical Optics Corp, is focused on improving the wearability of electronic components through novel, low-profile connectors with associated cabling embedded in flexible fabrics to reduce the load requirements of dismounted soldiers. During his presentation, "Connectors in Flexible Fabrics to Reduce Load Requirements for Soldiers," Gans discusses connector technology that provides the foundation for a versatile personal area network for the modern dismounted soldier.

Leah Buechley, Assistant Professor at the MIT Media Lab, is a well known expert in the field of e-textiles and her work includes developing a method for creating cloth printed circuit boards. In her presentation, "LilyPad Arduino: A Kit for Prototyping Electronic Textiles," Buechley discusses how the LilyPad Arduino is being employed by designers, technology researchers, artists and hobbyists to build a variety of e-textiles. www.media.mit.edu

Michael Corbett, owner of WEEL Technologies, is a leader in the design, manufacturing and system integration of wearable electronics products for the Sports Action and Health/Fitness markets. In his presentation, "Smart Textiles as a Component in a System," Corbett discusses the design of wearable electronics and the role of a system integrator.

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