Design, construction and modelling of embroidered sensors made from graphene and metal coated yarn

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • Sirui Tan


Being the closest layer to our body, clothing provides an ideal platform for integrating sensors and actuators to monitor physiological signals. There is a large demand for developing reliable wearable sensors in biological sensing areas, such as wound moisture monitoring, human motion detections or long-term body temperature measuring. This research work has been carried out in order to manufacture reliable, flexible and comfortable embroidery sensors for pressure, temperature, moisture sensing and heating. Much work has been carried out in order to design and manufacture wearable sensors by knitting, weaving or printing. However, little work was found in literature on embroidery technique as the fabrication process. Recent work based on embroidery techniques are almost in wireless embroidered antenna areas. In this thesis, the feasibility of using embroidery techniques to produce flexible, reliable and functional wearable sensors have been examined. The wearable sensors were embroidered by using the electro-conductive sewing yarns; graphene, carbon and silver coated sewing yarns were investigated in this research. Embroidered piezoresistive, moisture, temperature sensors and heating elements were designed, manufactured and evaluated. During the embroidery process, the stitch density and stitch size was found to have an influence on both mechanical properties and electrical properties of the sensors. Hence, in this research, the relationship between stitch density and stitch size and sensor sensitivity was investigated. The results in this thesis can be used to inform and provide guidelines for developing embroidered wearable sensors. In this research, the embroidered sensors were analysed for sensitivity, high response speed, good long-term stability and repeatability in pressure, temperature and moisture sensing. Especially, the graphene yarns used in this research exhibited high sensitivity to pressure and moisture, the thermal electrical property of graphene material was found significant as well.


Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Award date31 Dec 2020