The Manufacturing of Textile Products with Incorporated Electrodes

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One of the main causes of disabling deficits is neurological affections. Many times, the evolution of the condition leads to a diminution of the patient’s life quality. Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is part of the neurological rehabilitation process that comprises all the actions one can take in order to increase a patient’s integration and autonomy degree from a social and financial point of view. FES is a method based on substituting the commands that are usually transmitted by the nervous system with an electric impulse. The use of such a method on different body areas required the development of some adequate devices, starting with the stimulator itself and finishing with the way in which the stimulus is conveyed to the effectors. Textile materials that incorporate sensors and, mainly, the clothing products that have such components in their structure, have a high applicability potential; they can be used for preventing illnesses and for the rehabilitation of seniors, of people who are confined to bed, sportsmen, people who suffer from long-term illnesses, disabled people, thus diminishing the time one spends in the hospital. A possible solution for manufacturing incorporated textile electrodes consists in the insertion of some electro-conductive yarns onto textile surfaces by using a variety of technologies. The project approaches the use of knitting, a widespread textile technology. The incorporated knitted electrodes were accomplished by applying the knitting technology on single circular small diameter machines. Thus, we were able to obtain a variety of knitted articles as two-dimensional or three-dimensional tubular knitted fabric. Their dimensions, structures, and parameters correspond to the typo-dimensions of the human body and to the purpose for which the clothing product was designed. The knitted versions were tested by using a Microstim2v2 (PW = 300 μs, 40 Hz) neurostimulator for which the current intensity was adjusted to approx. 30 mA.

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Autex Research Journal

The Journal of Association of Universities for Textiles (AUTEX)

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