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Fiber and Polymer Science Student to Compete at Three Minute Thesis

Ashish Kapoor

Written by Julie Watterson

One of 10 finalists chosen to participate in NC State University’s third annual Three Minute Thesis competition on Oct. 31 will represent the Wilson College of Textiles. Ashish Kapoor is pursuing his Ph.D. in Fiber and Polymer Science. The event, which is part of the university’s celebration of Red and White Week, provides the opportunity for PhD and master’s students to present a compelling oration on their thesis topic and its significance. 

“When I first found out about the ‘Three Minute Thesis Competition’, I wanted to be a part of it because it was an opportunity for me to showcase my research at the university level,” said Kapoor.

Kapoor received his Master’s in Textile Engineering in 2015 from the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi, India, where he worked on developing a cotton fabric for moisture transport. “I completed two internships in India in the field of yarn spinning where I worked with ring spinning and new spinning systems. I joined the Ph.D. program at Wilson College of Textiles in fall 2015 after receiving NC State University’s Provost Doctoral Recruitment Fellowship for 2015-16 and started working with Dr. Tushar K. Ghosh,” said Kapoor.

His interests lead him outside of the field of textiles as well. “I am majoring in Fiber and Polymer Science along with a minor in Electrical Engineering. My current research focuses on the development of fiber-based active sensory textiles and photoresponsive polymer based actuators for soft robotics applications,” said Kapoor.

After obtaining his master’s degree, Kapoor yearned to delve more into textile research. He decided NC State was the best possible location to carry out innovative research in the field. “It is known worldwide for its quality of research and prestigious degree programs. I joined the Fiber and Polymer Science Ph.D. program here as it aligned well with my research interests and background,” said Kapoor.

Kapoor was led to textile engineering when he observed that wanted to study the science and engineering behind clothing and textiles. “I was also fascinated about various interesting textile structures and wanted to learn to engineer them to suit various needs,” said Kapoor.

In the Three Minute Thesis competition, Kapoor plans to present his research titled ‘Fiber-based Fabric Sensors.’

“This research is primarily about imparting electrical functionality at the fiber level, creating sensory textiles where the crossover point of two fibers will be the sensing pixel. This allows pressure, strain, shear and wetness detection. This novel technology may be used to mass produce large area, smart textile based sensing arrays. These fabric sensors can be used for monitoring vital signs of infants, bed-ridden elderly and soldiers. It may also help detect projectile impact in combat situations, as well as monitoring inner prosthetic socket environment,” explained Kapoor.

For more information on the Three Minute Thesis and to hear Kapoor present, visit: