High Tech Yarn Made from Carbon Nanotubes Can Generate Electricity When Twisted and Stretched

By: | February 3rd, 2023

A team of researchers from the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) has engineered a new and improved type of high-tech yarn to bring people energy and power. Made from carbon nanotubes, the yarn is dubbed ‘twistrons’. It can generate electricity when stretched or twisted.

The yarn is just like traditional wool or cotton-yarn, but it has the ability to convert mechanical movement into electricity. Although it’s not a new discovery, the UTD researchers first reported the twistron technology in a study published in the journal Science in 2017.

But, since then the researchers have refined the process to make the yarns significantly efficient and produce more electricity per stretching cycle than the previous version.

In the new study, the research team constructed ‘twistrons’ from carbon nanotubes (CNTs). Carbon nanotubes are hollow cylinders of carbon 10,000 times smaller in diameter than human hair.  The nanotubes are twist-spun into high-strength, lightweight yarns, similar to the way conventional yarns used in textiles are constructed. 

Twistron has already been tested in clothing 

Twistrons when sewn into textiles, can sense and harvest human motion to power wearable devices. Twistrons can harvest energy from the movement of ocean waves to power sensors.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

More articles from Industry Tap...