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Shape-Shifting Fiber Produces Morphing Fabrics

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The fiber could be used in adaptive performance wear or compression garments.

The fiber, which is fully compatible with existing textile manufacturing machinery, could be used to make morphing textiles.

Credit: Jack Forman et al

The FibeRobo programmable fiber developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Northeastern University researchers can change shape in response to temperature changes.

The researchers used liquid crystal elastomer (LCE) resin, which causes the fiber to contract when heated; removing heat restores the fiber’s original molecular alignment, and shape.

The fibers can be combined with conductive thread, which acts as a heating element when electric current runs through it, giving users digital control over a textile’s form.

The MIT researchers used FibeRobo to demonstrate several applications, including an adaptive sports bra that tightens when the user begins exercising, and a compression jacket for a dog that would actuate and “hug” the dog based on a Bluetooth signal from the owner's smartphone.

From MIT News
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Abstracts Copyright © 2023 SmithBucklin, Washington, D.C., USA


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