Although market prediction for smart textiles in the coming years is high, their washability will be among the main criteria for their mass adoption. Hence, the need to understand precisely how the washing process can damage them. Therefore, the best care instructions can be determined and serve as guidelines for smart textile manufacturers to control the quality of their smart garments as well as their customers to wash them cautiously. In this study, only the sensing part, silver-plated-nylon electrode sensors, is taken into account. To determine the chemical and the mechanical impacts of the machine-washing process separately and simultaneously, textile electrodes were put in different washing conditions: with and without bleaching agents, with and without mechanical constraints, etc. Then spectrophotometry, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) were used to characterize these electrodes. Results show that liquid detergents should be preferred to powder ones. Indeed, the latter contain bleaching agents that tend to oxidize the silver layer, making it more vulnerable to the mechanical rubbings that tear off the silver layer progressively washes after washes. As a consequence, the silver-plated-nylon loses rapidly its conductivity so that the electrode is no longer able to sense biopotentials.
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