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Piezoelectric fibre sensors

Piezoelectricity is used in many areas of technology. For example, in distance sensors in automobiles or in ultrasonic transducers in material diagnostics and medicine, which function due to the inverse piezoelectric effect.

Piezoelectric ceramics are mainly used for these applications. The TITK offers the possibility to produce piezoelectric sensors by using the semi-crystalline, thermoplastic homopolymer polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) and its copolymers by means of a high-temperature melt spinning process.


The sensors can be integrated into a wide variety of applications. Due to their high flexibility, they offer the possibility to be integrated into conventional process chains and to functionalise components.

Application examples

  • Textiles
  • Composite materials
  • Concrete components
  • Windows, facades, floors
  • Injection moulded and rubber components (current research project)

Integrated into the applications mentioned, the sensor filaments can detect and localise damage via the change in acoustic properties. Piezoelectric fibre sensors generate electrical charges during deformation (stretching, bending, torsion), which can be read out as electrical voltage. This enables them to record low-frequency (even in the sub-Hz range) deformations of textiles or other flexible structural shapes.

More information

Research projects (German)


  • Ehrhardt, M.; Neupert, M.; Wegener, C.: „Piezoelectric Strings as a Musical Interface” (NIME 2020, Birmingham City University, Birmingham, 21.07-25.07.2020)
  • Ehrhardt, M.; Todkar, B.S.; Szabó, L.: „Piezoelectric Fiber as a Textile Sensor”, (Aachen-Dresden-Denkendorf ITC, Dresden, 28.11.-29.11.2019)
  • Ehrhardt, M.: “Application of Functional Fibers as Textile Sensors for the Detection of Presence of a Person” (Dornbirn MFC 2017, Dornbirn, 14.09.2017)
  • Ehrhardt, M.: "Weiterentwicklung von textilen Sensorfasern mit Piezoeffekt im Einsatz zur Verschleißvorhersage von Werkzeugen“ (Smart-Tex Symposium, Weimar, 13.10.2016)
  • Döbel, C.: „Development and Integration of Sensor Fibers for Smart Maintenance“ (Dornbirn MFC 2016, Dornbirn, 18.08.2016)