Innovation in the form of the combination of soft materials with high technology has led to the development of so-called Smart Textiles. These are of strategic importance for the European textile industry to sustain their competitive edge and to counter threats from low-labour cost producers.
Smart Textiles can conduct light, heat or currents; i.e. the textile becomes an interactive product and can now become part of larger product service systems (PSS). This opens up a vast field of opportunities for textile developers and product and service designers to combine their disciplines in the application areas of well being and life style.
To develop these complex PSS solutions, manufacturers need to move away from their current fragmented, slow or non-existent knowledge exchange methods and team up with relevant partners. Initial investment in this field has led to the design and development of an inspirational test-bed, called ‘Wearable Senses’ at TU/e.
What questions were answered?
Teams from 3 universities and Industry partners were working together to answer the questions:
How can the application of user-centred design methods discover, exchange and combine the theoretical principles, strong traditions and best practices within the domain of textile, interactive product and service design?
What are the methods and criteria for the different stakeholders to pass the transitions from the Incubation, Nursery and Adoption phases?
How can the creative industry illicit awareness about the opportunities and challenges of Smart Textile PSS through co-creation and the use of inspirational Test-beds?
What have the teams achieved?
A methodology and tools for the creative industries to translate societal issues into opportunities for Smart Textile PSS’s. An ‘inspirational test-bed’ where proposals for these systems are realised and studied in context.
Timeframe and communication:
Smart Textile Services started in 2011 and finished in 2015. Throughout the project, we published articles in journals and conference proceedings in the fields of industrial design, computer-human interaction, empirical aesthetics ad health and care research. Progress was published via this website and explored in workshops.
Who was involved?
Scientific partners: Eindhoven University of Technology, Delft University of Technology, the Design Academy Eindhoven and Saxion University of Applied Sciences;
Industry and Societal partners: Audax Textiel Museum, V2_, Waag Society, Modint, Contact Groep Textiel, Unit040 Ontwerp, Metatronics en De Wever
Prof. dr. ir. Caroline Hummels, Eindhoven University of Technology
Dr. Oscar Tomico, Eindhoven University of Technology
Dr. ir. Stephan Wensveen, Eindhoven University of Technology (until 2011)
Prof. dr. Kees Overbeeke, Eindhoven University of Technology (until 2011)
Tactile Dialogues - AestheticTactile Dialogues is a textile object in the form of a pillow with integrated vibration elements that react to touch. The goal of the textile object is to enable a dialogue by triggering physical communication patterns between a person with severe dementia (the care receiver) and a family-member, spouse or caretaker (the caregiver). In addition, the object also responds to activity and hand movement, which is important for people with dementia. The object can be used in spaces where two people are sitting, e.g at a table, couch or over the armrests of a wheelchair. The object consists of a textile with integrated vibration elements. When these elements are touched (by rubbing, stroking or pushing) a soft vibration can be felt from multiple locations on the object. When both sides are touched simultaneously, the vibration will increase. This stimulates small movements and social connection between the people using the pillow, it allows for a dialogue based on physical interaction to appear.
ArcInTex Exhibition TIO3, Ronse, Belgium (16/10/2013 – 29/11/2013).
Baltan Open Lab: Wearable Senses (22.10.2013)
Art Academy of Latvia at ArcInTex exhibition (06 – 08.01.2014)
Vilnius Academy of Art (Lithuania) at ArcInTex exhibition (22 – 31.01.2014)
Co-Created Wearables at Open Lab Expo in Baltan Laboratories (28.01 – 25.02.2014)
Hypercrafting smart textiles for well-being. Careful Designs, Waag Open Space (17.01.2014)
Auckland University of Technology (New Zealand) at ArcInTex exhibition (1 – 10.04.2014)
“Tradition meets Future” (Horst, NL) (23.3.2014 – 28.9.2014)
Mind the Step exhibition, Klokgebouw Eindhoven, Dutch Design Week, (October 18 – October 27, 2014).
Smart Textiles – Wearable Services, TextielMuseum Tilburg (21.1.2015 - 22.2.2015)Demo and presentation during TEI' 15 (Tangible