Capacitive Non-Woven Textile Stretch Sensors

Capacitive non-woven textile stretch sensors
Technology Overview

  • A stretch sensor made from stretchable, non-woven textiles for use in wearable technology.

Textile sensors are valuable for wearable technology and soft robotics applications. However, current textile sensors often produce inconsistent electrical measurements and do not produce stable and reliable data. Sensor types to date include knitted, woven, and embroidered sensors, but researchers have not thoroughly studied creating non-woven textile sensors.

Non-woven textile sensors are optimal for use as sensors due to their manufacturing and final structure. For chemically bonded non-woven fabrics, there is opportunity to add conductive elements to the adhesive, which allows for improved electrical performance over current textile-based sensors.

Technology Description
This invention is a capacitive non-woven sensor capable of electrical changes due to stretch, pressure, or other mechanical changes in shape or size. The sensor materials include natural or manufactured fibers, conductive elements such as PEDOT: PSS coating, graphene, conductive fibers, or other conductive elements added to the fiber web, the adhesive, or both. The capacitive capabilities are possible through a specialized construction of the sensors. The sensor’s construction includes two parallel layers of conductive fiber web with a non-conductive fiber web or other textile material sandwiched in the middle. Due to the nature of capacitors, pressing or stretching, or otherwise changing the sensors’ physical properties will change the sensor’s electrical characteristics, making it useful for wearable technology and soft robotics applications.


  • Expanding market for textile-based sensors
  • Uses capacitive methods rather than the current market offering of resistive measures
  • Useful for wearables and soft robotics applications

Future uses of this technology could include:

  • on-body capturing of kinetic or kinematic information
  • Possible uses in wearables for industry, sports, medical or tactical applications
  • Soft robotics
  • Areas where textile-based stretch sensors are needed

Current opportunities for this product include applying for funding to create initial prototypes and provide proof of concept. Funding opportunities include grants specific to cotton product creation and other technology-based funding channels. This proof of concept can then be used to develop needed technology further and find licensing partners who would want to utilize it in their products.


Contact Information

TTO Home Page:

Name: Jonathan Rudd

Title: Licensing Associate

Department: Office of Technology Management