Inkjet printed dipole antennas on textiles for wearable communications

This paper presents an inkjet printed textile antenna realised using a novel fabrication methodology. Conventionally, it is very difficult to inkjet print onto textiles due to surface roughness. This paper demonstrates how this can be overcome by developing an interface coated layer which bonds to a standard polyester cotton fabric, creating a smooth surface. A planar dipole antenna has been fabricated, simulated and measured. This paper includes DC resistance, RF reflection coefficient results and antenna radiation patterns. Efficiencies of greater than 60% have been achieved with only one layer of conducting ink. The paper demonstrates that the interface layer saves considerable time and cost in terms of the number of inkjet layers needed whilst also improving the printing resolution.