Garment-integrated sensors equip clothes with a smart sensing capability, while preserving the comfort of the user. However, this benefit can be to the detriment of sensing accuracy due to the unpredictability of garment movement (which affects sensor positioning) and textile folds (which can affect sensor orientation). However, sensors integrated directly into garments or fabric structures can also be used to detect the movement of the garment during wearing. Specifically, a textile bend sensor could be used to sense folds in the garment. We tested a garment-integrated stitched sensor for five types of folds, stitched on five different weights of un-stretchable denim fabric and analyzed the effects of fold complexity and fabric stiffness, under un-insulated and insulated conditions. Results show that insulation improves the linearity and repeatability of the sensor response, particularly for higher fold complexity. Stiffer fabrics show greater sensitivity, but less linearity. Sensor response amplitude is larger for more complex fold geometries. The utility of a linear bending response (insulated) and a binary shorting response (un-insulated) is discussed. Overall, the sensor exhibits excellent repeatability and accuracy, particularly for a fiber-based, textile-integrated sensor.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
- Bend sensor
- Garment-integrated sensing
- Smart clothing
- Wearable technology