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Smart Coat with a Fully-Embedded Textile Antenna for IoT Applications

Loss, C. ; Gonçalves, R. ; Lopes, C. ; Pinho, P. ; Salvado, R.

Sensors Vol. 16, Nº 938, pp. 1 - 13, June, 2016.

ISSN (print): 1424-3210
ISSN (online): 1424-8220

Journal Impact Factor: 2,033 (in 2015)

Digital Object Identifier: 10.3390/s16060938

The Internet of Things (IoT) scenario is strongly related with the advance of the development of wireless sensor networks (WSN) and radio frequency identification (RFID) systems. Additionally, in the WSN context, for a continuous feed, the integration of textile antennas for energy harvesting into smart clothing is a particularly interesting solution when the replacement of batteries is not easy to practice, such as in wearable devices. This paper presents the E-Caption: Smart and Sustainable Coat. It has an embedded dual-band textile antenna for electromagnetic energy harvesting, operating at global system for mobile communication (GSM) 900 and digital cellular system (DCS) 1800 bands. This printed antenna is fully integrated, as its dielectric is the textile material composing the coat itself. The E-Caption illustrates the innovative concept of textile antennas that can be manipulated as simple emblems. Seven prototypes of these “emblem” antennas, manufactured by lamination and embroidering techniques are also presented. It is shown that the orientation of the conductive fabric does not influence the performance of the antenna. It is also shown that the direction and number of the stitches in the embroidery may influence the performance of the antenna. Moreover, the comparison of results obtained before and after the integration of the antenna into cloth shows the integration does not affect the behavior of the antenna.