E-Textile Technology Review-From Materials to Application

Abiodun Komolafe, Bahareh Zaghari, Russel Torah, Alex S. Weddell, Hamideh Khanbareh, Zois Michail Tsikriteas, Mark Vousden, Mahmoud Wagih, Ulises Tronco Jurado, Junjie Shi, Sheng Yong, Sasikumar Arumugam, Yi Li, Kai Yang, Guillaume Savelli, Neil M. White, Steve Beeby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (SciVal)


Wearable devices are ideal for personalized electronic applications in several domains such as healthcare, entertainment, sports and military. Although wearable technology is a growing market, current wearable devices are predominantly battery powered accessory devices, whose form factors also preclude them from utilizing the large area of the human body for spatiotemporal sensing or energy harvesting from body movements. E-textiles provide an opportunity to expand on current wearables to enable such applications via the larger surface area offered by garments, but consumer devices have been few and far between because of the inherent challenges in replicating traditional manufacturing technologies (that have enabled these wearable accessories) on textiles. Also, the powering of e-textile devices with battery energy like in wearable accessories, has proven incompatible with textile requirements for flexibility and washing. Although current e-textile research has shown advances in materials, new processing techniques, and one-off e-textile prototype devices, the pathway to industry scale commercialization is still uncertain. This paper reports the progress on the current technologies enabling the fabrication of e-textile devices and their power supplies including textile-based energy harvesters, energy storage mechanisms, and wireless power transfer solutions. It identifies factors that limit the adoption of current reported fabrication processes and devices in the industry for mass-market commercialization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9471836
Pages (from-to)97152-97179
Number of pages28
JournalIEEE Access
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the U.K. Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) under Grant EP/P010164/1, in part by the European Commission through the European Infrastructure powering the internet of things (EnABLES) Project by H2020-EU. under Grant 730957, and in part by the WEARable multiPLEXed biomedical electrodes (WEARPLEX) Project through H2020-EU.2.1.1 under Grant 825339. The work of Steve Beeby was supported by the Royal Academy of Engineering through the chairs in emer. ging technologies scheme.


  • e-textile devices
  • e-textile manufacturing and scalability
  • e-textile power sources
  • Wearables

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • General Materials Science
  • General Engineering


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