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E-Thesis 27 views

Elite Sport as a Unique Test Arena for Printed Wearable Technology / ANDREW CLAYPOLE

Swansea University Author: ANDREW CLAYPOLE

  • E-Thesis – open access under embargo until: 1st January 2023

DOI (Published version): 10.23889/SUthesis.59727

Abstract

A Graphite nanoplatelet enabled, flexible, printed heater has been developed to help maintain muscles temperature in elite athletes, to provide a competitive advantage. The heaters had to conform to the body to maximise heat transfer whilst minimising disruption to athletic effort. The heat output h...

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Published: Swansea 2020
Institution: Swansea University
Degree level: Doctoral
Degree name: EngD
Supervisor: Kilduff, Liam P.
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa59727
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Abstract: A Graphite nanoplatelet enabled, flexible, printed heater has been developed to help maintain muscles temperature in elite athletes, to provide a competitive advantage. The heaters had to conform to the body to maximise heat transfer whilst minimising disruption to athletic effort. The heat output had to remain uniform even while flexed and stretched. The impact of formulation on the rheology and printability of Graphite nanoplatelet based stretchable conductive inks was investigated. Plasma functionalised Graphite nanoplatelets were dispersed in a low viscosity Thermoplastic Polyurethane resin. Established suspension rheology models were fitted to the experimental data and a best fit found using the Krieger-Dougherty model. Ammonia plasma functionalised Graphite nanoplatelets were proved to form a more stable ink than un-functionalised Graphite nanoplatelets. Graphite nanoplatelets were hybridised with carbon black to improve the electrical properties of the coatings. The carbon black coated the Graphite nanoplatelets, improving interplatelet contact. At the highest carbon black concentrations, increases in viscosity and elasticity prevented the ink from relaxing to form a consistent layer. An optimum ink formulation produced coatings with a sheet resistance of 177Ω/□. The stretchable carbon ink had superior electromechanical properties than a stretchable silver ink. The carbon ink maintained electrical conductivity up to substrate break and showed a repeatable electromechanical response to cyclic straining to 100% nominal strain. The stretchable inks were constructed into a printed heater and thermoformed onto Lycra. The heaters produced uniform heat output up to 20% nominal strain, during cyclic loading to 10% nominal strain and while compressed. The optimised inks were used to create heaters for a stretchable, prototype base-layer garment for cold chamber testing, which better maintained muscle temperature and the athlete’s perception of warmth than an unheated control. An optimised design was used to produce garments for outdoor winter training 2018/2020 in preparation for the Tokyo Olympics.
Keywords: Printed electronics, Wearable Technology, Elite Sport, Screen Printing, Heated clothing
College: College of Engineering