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    Content by Mika Satomi and Hannah Perner-Wilson
    The following institutions have funded our research and supported our work:

    From 2013-2015 Mika is a guest professor at the eLab at Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weissensee

    From July - December 2013 Hannah was a researcher at the UdK's Design Research Lab

    From 2010-2012 Mika was a guest researcher in the Smart Textiles Design Lab at The Swedish School of Textiles

    From 2009 - 2011 Hannah was a graduate student in the MIT Media Lab's High-Low Tech research group led by Leah Buechley

    In 2009 Hannah and Mika were both research fellows at the Distance Lab

    Between 2003 - 2009 Hannah and Mika were both students at Interface Cultures
    We support the Open Source Hardware movement. All our own designs published on this website are released under the Free Cultural Works definition
    Conductive Materials

    Conductive Fabrics

    also see: Connections >> Solderability Tests
    There are a range of different conductive fabrics available. Some of the most frequently used conductive fabrics, tend to be the most available.

    LessEMF is a retail company that stocks a great range of conductive fabrics for electro magnetic field shielding. It seems like some of their fabrics are manufactured by Shieldex, but LessEMF renames the fabrics for their own sales and so it is unclear which ones are really the same. I’ve tried to match a few up through comparison:
    Shieldex: MedTex E 130 DS = LessEMF: Stretch conductive fabric
    Shieldex: Armor RTF = LessEMF: Zelt Conductive Fabric


    >> http://www.shieldextrading.net (USA, DE)


    1 x 20 cm = 4 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 7 Ohm

    Highly conductive, nice and

    MedTex E 130 DS

    1 x 20 cm = 13 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 23 Ohm

    Super similar, if not the same as LessEMF’s Stretch Conductive Fabric. Highly conductive and resistance halves itself when stretched fully.

    MedTex P 180 OS

    From the small sample I have it looks like a nice stretch conductive fabric to work with. Similar to LessEMF’s Stretch Conductive Fabric. Resistance also halves itself when stretched fully.


    All of the fabrics that LessEMF has to offer are very interesting, but some of them find more use than others in many of our projects.
    Our favorites are their Stretch, FlecTron N and CobalTex conductive fabrics.
    >> http://lessemf.com/fabric.html (USA)

    Stretch Conductive Fabric

    1 x 20 cm = 13 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 23 Ohm

    Silver plated, high conductivity, stretches in both directions.

    Zelt Conductive Fabric

    1 x 20 cm = 0.4 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 0.6 Ohm

    Tin/copper coated.


    1 x 20 cm = 5.2 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 12.4 Ohm

    Cobalt alloy top coating, highly conductive. Looks and feels just like FlecTron N. Solderable!

    ShieldIt Super

    1 x 20 cm = 0.3 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 0.6 Ohm

    Nickle and copper coated, comes with a non-conductive hot melt adhesive on one side, not as flexible and soft as other conductive fabrics but very conductive and great for making circuits that don’t need to be soft, but merely flexible. Nickle may cause skin irritation.


    1 x 20 cm = 1.5 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 2.5 Ohm

    Copper plated, high conductivity, but not suitable for wearable applications since the material will tarnish with exposure to liquids and skin oils. Solderable!

    FlecTron N

    1 x 20 cm = 5.2 Ohm
    0.5 x 20 cm = 12.4 Ohm

    Nickel/copper plated, high conductivity and more resistant than FlecTron to skin oils, but nickel might cause skin irritation. Solderable!

    Soft and Safe Shielding Fabric NEW

    “The Perfect Garment Shield”
    Silverized, highly conductive, nice and soft, hard to tell it is conductive, but it is!

    Pure Copper Polyester Taffeta Fabric NEW

    Alternative to FlecTron!
    Have not tried this yet.

    Plug and Wear

    This Italian textile company is knitting conductive textiles from thin metal wires, including them in three layer knitted textiles to create switches. And also including resistive yarns to knit pressure pressure sensors.
    Plug and Wear now also stock a range of the LessEMF conductive fabrics!

    >> http://www.plugandwear.com/ (Italy)


    Sparkfun now also sells small amounts of two different kinds of conductive fabric, that are most likely from Shieldex, but it is unclear exactly which ones these are.

    >> http://www.sparkfun.com/

    Sparkfun Conductive Fabric (MedTex180)
    Stretchy in one direction. Less than 1 ohm/10cm2 resistance. One side is very shiny and the other is not.
    See stretch conductive fabric comparison post for more detail.


    Include stripes of conductive thread in their knit fabrics.
    >> http://www.heathcoat.co.uk/ (UK)


    Integrate X-Static fibers in their woven fabrics, running like needle-stripes.
    Toray – Innovation by Chemistry >> http://www.seeitsafe.co.uk/ (UK)

    Copper Wire Mesh

    A woven copper wire mesh that is fine enough to feel soft, but stiff enough to be bend into shape and is ideal for soldering to.

    Copper Fabric with Conductive Adhesive

    I don’t know the origins of the following fabric. It is a dark shade of copper, riptop fabric that comes with peel-off adhesive on the back, it is highly conductive and reminds of FlecTron.


    >> Hebei Metals & Minerals Corp. Ltd http://www.3ltex.com (China)
    >> http://www.plugandwear.com/ (Italy)
    >> http://www.lessemf.com/fabric.html (New Jersey, USA)
    >> http://eeonyx.com/ (USA)
    >> http://www.marktek-inc.com/ (USA) + They also sell EeonTex Conductive Textiles manufactured by Eeonyx
    >> http://www.fine-silver-productsnet.com (USA)
    >> http://www.seeitsafe.co.uk/ (UK)
    >> http://www.heathcoat.co.uk/ (UK)
    >> http://www.lairdtech.com
    >> http://www.osnf.com/ (USA)
    >> http://www.mutr.co.uk/index.php?cPath=6_572 (UK)
    >> http://www.3ltex.com/ (China)
    >> http://www.sparkfun.com/ (USA)

    55 Comments so far

    1. booper on February 13th, 2015

      Shieldex is twice the price of lessemf too, for conductive silver stretch fabric!

    2. PM on February 28th, 2015

      Hi. I’m looking for 1-4 square metres of conductive material that can be in direct contact with skin for long periods for a project I am doing.
      Could you direct me to anything that would do this job and any price guides you know of?
      Many Thanks.

    3. Conductive Fabric | XL-UAT on March 1st, 2015

      […] Conductive fabrics […]

    4. orte on April 28th, 2015

      Anyone an idea of a conductive fabric to measure body temperature?

      Kind Regards

    5. Asbjørn on August 23rd, 2015

      Hi! Great site :)!
      I need a conductive fabric that do not fray and is elastic. Do you have any suggestions?

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