23 March 2022

Opportunities & Challenges with E-Textiles: Environmental Sustainability

View this on-demand webinar which took place on Tuesday 22 March 2022.

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A two-part webinar series exploring the challenges and opportunties with e-textiles and wearable technology.

The session will provide the opportunity to discuss and consult on the issues and barriers to successful waste management in electronics and textiles and aims to build ask participants to make suggestions for the drafting of a regulatory framework for e-textiles waste based on design for disassembly principles.

 

 
E-textiles are a rapidly expanding body of materials, with extensive prototyping and market testing being carried out globally with potential fashion, military and medical applications. This is leading to novel combinations of nano materials, electrical components and fibres which will have a challenging waste profile. A small number of researchers such as Kohler 2011,2013 [2,3] and Veske, P. et al. (2019) have identified the need for regulation in this area and have highlighted the potential environmental impact of e-textiles. 

These emerging textiles are partially covered by a myriad of directives and legislature from three very separate disciplines which means there is potential for e-textiles to find their way into landfill due to their position on the edges of WEEE and REACH legislation in the EU and UK.  E-textile developers are calling for action to clarify the position of e-textiles in legislature and to define related standards.  As a budding product area, e-textiles could lead the way by engendering environmentally aware design for disassembly practice into new products. How this is brought about and what it looks like is an important part of e-textiles journey to the mass market, requiring cross disciplinary discourse with stakeholder and policy maker engagement.

The session will provide the opportunity to discuss and consult on the issues and barriers to successful waste management in electronics and textiles and aims to build ask participants to make suggestions for the drafting of a regulatory framework for e-textiles waste based on design for disassembly principles.

 


Smart Materials & Systems Group

IOM3 Smart Materials & Systems Committee activities provide a one-stop shop for expert advice, specialist conferences and professional development opportunities in this rapidly emerging field.

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