Soft Hardware Developed by Yoel Fink

The latest development in textiles and fibers is a kind of soft hardware that you can wear: cloth that has electronic devices built right into it.

Researchers at MIT have now embedded high speed optoelectronic semiconductor devices, including light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and diode photodetectors, within fibers that were then woven at Inman Mills, in South Carolina, into soft, washable fabrics and made into communication systems. This marks the achievement of a long-sought goal of creating “smart” fabrics by incorporating semiconductor devices — the key ingredient of modern electronics — which until now was the missing piece for making fabrics with sophisticated functionality.

For the first time, the researchers from MIT and AFFOA have produced fibers with embedded electronics that are so flexible they can be woven into soft fabrics and made into wearable clothing.  Courtesy of the researchers

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