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This month offers and requests from the materials sector

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Electrical Conductive Textiles

Electrical Conductive Textiles - Looking for Partners for a Horizon 2020 project

Electrical Conductive Textiles - Looking for Partners for a Horizon 2020 project

A group of R&D institutions from Europe is looking for further partners which are invited to participate - academic as well as industrial.

State of the Art:

  • Metal coatings via PVD (physical vapour deposition) on rovings or textiles


  • Coated textile:
    • Modern textiles consist of fibre bundles (rovings) with a high number of single filaments. Only the outer surface of the textile is coated and the inner rovings and filaments are uncoated. An extremely inhomogeneous distribution of the layer thickness will result.
  • Coating of rovings:
    • In contrast to the textiles the coatability of rovings is better but the uniformity issues regarding the inner filaments remain.  
    • A subsequent processing of rovings for the manufacture of textiles can damage the layer due to mechanical loads.

Project Idea - well beyond State of the Art:

  • Application of ALD (atomic layer deposition) technology for the deposition of electrically conductive (and transparent) layers on rovings or textiles for the integration of more functions in textiles.
  • Fabrication of (mixed) oxides, e.g. ZnO / Al2O3 for formation of TCO (transparent conductive oxides) like ZnO:Al
  • Layers with a thickness up to 100 nm covering each single filament homogeneously.
  • Deposition temperature below 200 °C (e.g. Al2O3: RT possible; ZnO: 120 - 200°C)


We can offer a deposition technology which could be suitable to deposit electrical conductive layers on textile fibers. Regarding the requested issue we have successfully addressed following problems which are similar:

  • Deposition of approx. 30 nm alumina on carbon fiber-based 3D-textile preforms
  • Resulting layers on 3D-textile preforms are homogeneous and conformal to all fibre bundles and filament
  • Deposition of transparent conductive layers (TCO) on float glass substrates
  • TCO material is ZnO:Al
  • Eelectrical resistance is 14 Ohm/sqr. @ approx. 50 nm layer thickness
  • Deposition temperature 150 °C

The deposition technology is an adapted atomic layer deposition (ALD). In principle the deposition of a TCO layer can be done also at lower temperatures than 150 °C. But this requires further investigations of the process and the coatings at lower process temperatures. This development can be done according to the demands of the client.

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