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Development of a Soft Electrochromic Yarn with Low Operating Voltage

With the increasing demand of consumers for the wearable displays, various devices such as LED, OLED, optical fibers etc. have been integrated into clothes. However, their high energy consumption and rigidity restrained their applications in textiles. Recently, increasing amounts of smart materials have been applied to textiles to form flexible smart wearables. Among them, electrochromic materials can show color change induced by a change in electrical potential. Therefore, electrochromism makes the control of textile color-change possible. Additionally, electrochromism can be achieved by the application of a small electric field. Thus, it is also a promising energy-saving technology. However, many efforts have been made to coat electrochromic materials on rigid substrate which fail to achieve soft textile display, as well as fabrics which fail to obtain pixels small enough for display. Also, most organic electrochromic materials used in these researches are toxic for human skin. Therefore, this project will identify and fabricate suitable inorganic electrochromic materials without toxicity, and coat them onto soft conductive yarns by electroplating method; finally, a soft electrochromic yarn and a prototype of textile display will be obtained. This study paves the way for the futuristic textile display development.


Gold Medal in Special Edition 2021 Inventions Geneva Evaluation Days
Project No. (ITC) ITP/003/19TP
Project Type Seed
Project Co-ordinator Dr. YAO Lei
Research Institute The Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles & Apparel Limited
ITF Amount HK$ 2,798,000
Start Date DD/MM/YY 2019-03-29
Completion Date DD/MM/YY 2021-03-28
IP Number