Integration of multiple functions via textile microsystems technology

TITV Conference 2012

(PresseBox) ( Greiz, )
"Progress is the realisation of Utopias" - Under this guiding principle Dr Uwe Möhring welcomed the numerous attendants of the TITV conference 2012. Covering the general topic of textile microsystems technology for the fourth time, the convention again proved to be interesting and addressed a variety of topics.

Where is our economy heading? Dr Michael Harder, Büro für Interdisziplinäre Wissenschaften, examined this question in his plenary speech. By considering aspects from the Physics of Complex Systems and showing a connection with economic theories, he gave new insights on how our world and economy really work in these days of constantly growing intricacy. The outcome is clear: We will only be able to develop successful strategies if we learn to think "differently" and thus to understand the "crazy" world of economics.

With her lecture, Christine Kallmayer, Fraunhofer Institut Zuverlässigkeit und Mikrointegration (IZM), opened the special lectures' section of the two-day conference which covered the topics

- Technologies for flexible electronics
- Applications
- New functions in textiles
- Automotive textiles of tomorrow
- Textiles and building - a challenge for textile microsystems technology
- Integrating components in textiles.

In her speech she made it clear that the integration of electronic components into textile surfaces still remains difficult as the different mechanical characteristics affect the reliability. She sees great potential in the use of stretchable circuits. The so-called "Stretchable Circuit Boards" are especially suited for largearea applications such as textile displays or sensor arrays.

Dirk Zschenderlein, head of the R&D department at the TITV Greiz, presented possible joining techniques for electronic components and textile substrates. The institute favours the embroidery technology for the positioning and interconnection of electronic components on the textile. This approach combines processes of the electronic industry with textile technologies.

Fresh design and new functions - according to Holger Meinel, Daimler AG, these objectives can be reached with smart textiles. One of his visions is to cut down the energy consumption of heated car seats not only by replacing the conventional heating elements by textile constructs, but also by reducing the heating system to the cervical area of the driver as this is where the thermal centre of a person can be found. Another vision concerns vital sensors which are integrated into the steering wheel at present. Those could measure the oxygen content of the driver's blood and, hence, his tiredness. Eventually, they could trigger signals or functions.

Dr Martin Synold, Werner Sobek GmbH & Co. KG, illustrated that building envelopes as the "third skin of a person" play an important role when it comes to the reduction of the energy consumption of buildings and the enhancement of comfort and wellbeing as well as health and performance of their users. The flexibility, translucence and unique aesthetic characteristics of highly efficient textiles offer a great potential for their use in architecture.

During the breaks and the evening function, the participants discussed opportunities and limits of the integration of electronics into textiles. In an accompanying exhibition, the latest product innovations were presented.

With its trend-setting ideas the TITV Greiz is among this year's winners in the competition "365 Landmarks in the Land of Ideas". The Textile Research Institute Thuringia Vogtland with its project "Actively luminescent textiles for more safety from Thuringia" is one of the "Selected Landmarks 2012" in the Land of Ideas. Thereby, the institute belongs to the winners of the joint initiative "Germany - Land of Ideas" which is realised in cooperation with Deutsche Bank.

Every year, the initiative - under the patronage of the German president and in cooperation with Deutsche Bank - rewards 365 outstanding projects and ideas which make a lasting contribution to Germany's future viability. As one of this year's award winners the TITV Greiz is an ambassador for the Land of Ideas and represents the innovative potential of Germany.

In order to give the public a better understanding of its idea, the TITV Greiz will present itself on the occasion of the presentation of prizes during their "Tag der Innovationen" which will be held on 13 September 2012.
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