The visions developed for Smart Fabrics or Intelligent Textiles 15 years ago have recently been overtaken by the global phenomenon of Wearable Electronics. Practice has shown that it is much easier to make hardware wearable (smartphones, smartwatches, activity trackers, etc.) than to implement functionality directly into "software" (textiles). Nevertheless, the quest is still on and the potential applications are without limit. Forster Rohner Textile Innovations has specialized in industrial production techniques for Smart Fabrics. The talk will illustrate the possibilities and potentials and give insights into ongoing and successful projects.
Since 2009 Dr. Jan Zimmermann heads the division of Textile Innovation at Swiss embroidery specialist Forster Rohner AG. He received his diploma of Interdisciplinary Natural Sciences from the ETH Zurich and a PhD in Physical Chemistry from the University of Zurich. Never dreaming of ending up working in the textile industry, he is continuously amazed at the opportunities that arise when traditional textile manufacturing technologies are thought out of the box to create innovative product concepts.
Forster Rohner Textile Innovations is a manufacturer of eTextile components. The main focus of the company is the integration of electronic functionalities into textile structures using industrial embroidery technologies. Examples are the integration of LEDs and solar cells into textiles as well as the integration of sensor and heating structures.