AmbiKraf – An embedded non-emissive and fast changing wearable display

AmbiKraf is a novel non-emissive analog fabric display that has rapid color changing capability based on embedded semiconductor peltier junctions that are completely integrated into the soft fabric, enabling novel animations and interactive scenarios in the normal clothes that we wear.

AmbiKraf is a novel non‐emissive animated fabric technology that is fast, color changing, and robust. Here we combinethermochromic ink with semiconductor heating/cooling technologies, embedded in soft fabrics. By developing a technologythat makes the fabric itself change the color we present it as a ubiquitous display technology. We present our resultsthrough a various range of animated fabric prototypes. Through the use of AmbiKraf’s non emissive, subtle and calm colorchanging properties, we discuss its vision to develop a platform that allows the merging of complex technology into the richtraditions of textile arts and crafts to bring in a new meaning to such traditions.

Overall System of AmbiKraf
We use thermochromic inks (Figure 2) with customized color actuation temperatures optimized to the speed of color change. Different thermochromic inks are mixed and screen printed on to the fabric thus enabling easy implementation and robustness of the display. Light weight semiconductor peltier junctions intertwined into the fabric are used as temperature actuators, providing rapid heating and cooling on the same module. Thus our system enables bidirectional accurate and robust color control. With the use of a tuned control circuit a matrix of such Peltier modules are controlled introducing a novel form of fabric display. Thus fast changing and multicolor control allows us to show many animated sequences, providing a breakthrough in non-emissive display technologies.

Interactive Byobu art

AmbiKraf combing with Japanese Byobu art to present an interactive Byobu screen

Table Runner Demo (Left: Bird animation actuated, Right: Table runner when switched off)

Birds on a wall hanging art appearing and dissapearing

Representative Image


Concept video   :

Interactive Byobu   :

Table runner    :

Color changing bird    :

Wearable prototype    :


SIGGRAPH, Emerging Technologies, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, Aug 3-7 2009

Digital Content Expo Exhibition, ConTEX, Tokyo, Japan, October 20-25, 2009.

ICA (International Communication Association) Conference, Open Space Exhibitions, Singapore, June 22-25, 2010

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