Most of the textile and plastic materials are electrical insulators. They accumulate electrostatic charge, which causes problems such as severe shock, fire, dust accumulation, etc. during processing. The electrical conductivity is required to dissipate the charges and use of fibres blended with conductive type of fibres prevents such risk. Hence there is an urgent need to develop various types of fibres and fabrics with electrical conducting properties.
Low and limiting electrical conduction is required in many practical applications such as electromagnetic shielding, electrostatic elimination, conveyor belts, aviation/space suits, dry filtration, carpets etc. For this purpose, various products having reasonably good electrical conductivity are required. This can be obtained by incorporating metal fillers or coating with some agent. The textile materials being flexible and easily workable are the most preferred one in such cases.
Recently, new types of electro active polymers have been synthesized which have high electrical conductivity. Being organic, their compatibility with fibres and other polymers is very good. BTRA has undertaken studies on such conductive textiles having high electrical conductivity. The application areas for the conductive textiles are: