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Epidermis-Inspired Ultrathin 3D Cellular Sensor Array for Self-Powered Biomedical Monitoring

Author:
Yan, Cheng, Deng, Weili, Jin, Long, Yang, Tao, Wang, Zixing, Chu, Xiang, Su, Hai, Chen, Jun, Yang, Weiqing
Source:
ACS applied materials & interfaces 2018 v.10 no.48 pp. 41070-41075
ISSN:
1944-8252
Subject:
artificial intelligence, electronics, eyes, health services, heart rate, humans, image analysis, monitoring, nanoparticles, robots, separation, skin (animal)
Abstract:
Sensing devices with wearability would open the door to many advanced applications including soft robotics, artificial intelligence, and healthcare monitoring. Here, inspired by the configuration of the human epidermis, we present a flexible three-dimensional (3D) cellular sensor array (CSA) via a one-step thermally induced phase separation method. The CSA was framed by the 3D cellular electret with caged piezoelectric nanoparticles, which was ultrathin (80 μm), lightweight, and highly robust. For biomedical sensing, the 3D-CSA holds a decent pressure sensitivity up to 0.19 V kPa–¹ with a response time of less than 16 ms. Owing to its rigid structural symmetry, the 3D-CSA could be identically operated from its both sides. It was demonstrated to successfully measure the human heartbeat, detect the eyeball motion for sleeping monitoring, and tactile imaging. Mimicking the functionalities of the human skin with a self-powered operation feature, the 3D-CSA was expected to represent a substantial advancement in wearable electronics for healthcare.