Israeli Researchers Develop Flexible Sensor for Use in Artificial Skin
July 9, 2013 3:19 PM
comment(s) - last by
Material has a broad pressure sensing range; could be used to coat prosthetic limbs
It stretches like skin and has tiny
embedded points of sensation
. It's called
, or e-skin for short.
I. A New Skin
The latest e-skin comes courtesy of
Professor Hossam Haick
Technion-Israel Institute of Technology
and his team of biomedical researchers who pushed the boundaries of e-skin, creating a flexible sensor that offers similar capabilities to the real biological construct.
The new flexible sensor can "simultaneously sense touch, humidity, and temperature, as real skin can do" and is "at least 10 times more sensitive in touch than the currently existing touch-based e-skin systems."
Creating e-skin is a seemingly daunting task. The eventual goal is to coat prosthetic limbs with
the sensor layer
and then wire it up to the nervous system, restoring patients' sense of touch (or alternatively wire it up to robots to make them more humanlike). However, that's easier said that done.
[Image Source: ATS]
Real skin can sense with great detail a broad array of physical inputs -- humidity, temperature, pressure, and the presence of chemicals. That would generally make for one pricey, power-hungry sensor. But e-skin's requirements force researchers to try to preserve all that sensitivity and multi-sensory inputs in a layer that is relatively cheap and must be able to operate on low voltages.
II. Nanoparticle PET layer Improves Sensitivity
The tiny embedded nanosensors in Prof. Haick's e-skin are beautiful capped nanoparticles. The nanoparticle itself is made of gold and is topped with sensory "prong" molecules called ligands. Prof. Haick describes, "Monolayer-capped nanoparticles can be thought of as flowers, where the center of the flower is the gold or metal nanoparticle and the petals are the monolayer of organic ligands that generally protect it."
[Image Source: ACS/Prof. Haick]
The researchers deposited to the monolayer-capped nanoparticles atop a thin film of polyethylene terephthalate (PET),
the same flexible plastic
that is formed into soda bottles. The result is a conductive layer that responds to bending by bring particles to the surface, which in turn alters the electric properties, creating sensation. The sensor has a broad range sensing from "tens of milligrams to tens of grams".
The team says that the PET/nanoparticle layer will be embeddable within a variety of more complex multi-layer e-skin constructs, which in turn will be used to coat future artificial limbs. The sensors could also be repurposed by civil and mechanical engineers to create failure warnings to detect cracks in parts, buildings, or bridges.
[Image Source: ATS]
Dr. Nir Peled, Head of the Thoracic Cancer Research and Detection Center at Israel's
Sheba Medical Center
-- was not affiliated with the work, but praised it in a university press release, stating, "The development of the artificial skin as biosensor by Professor Haick and his team is another breakthrough that puts nanotechnology at the front of the diagnostic era."
has been published
[abstract] in the peer-reviewed journal
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
. Co-authors include Meital Segev-Bar and Gregory Shuster, graduate students in the
Technion's Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute
, as well as Avigail Landman and Maayan Nir-Shapira, undergraduate students in the Technion's Chemical Engineering Department.
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Future generation
7/10/2013 9:44:54 AM
I have no idea what you're talking about.
"Nowadays you can buy a CPU cheaper than the CPU fan." -- Unnamed AMD executive
New Self-Healing Polymer Acts Like Human Skin
November 14, 2012, 7:34 AM
Ford Focus Electric to Use Recycled Plastic Bottles for Seat Fabric
January 10, 2012, 10:25 PM
Robots Become More Lifelike with Sensory Skin
June 30, 2011, 2:31 PM
Semiconductor Nanowires Used to Develop Artificial Skin
September 13, 2010, 1:01 PM
U.S. Air Force F-35 Lightning II, F-22 Raptor Team Up for “Integration Training”
November 19, 2014, 9:15 AM
U.S. Marshals Using Fake, Airplane-based Cell Towers to Scan Cell Phones of Americans
November 14, 2014, 9:05 AM
Ford Enlists Wind Energy Corp. to Provide Wind, Solar Energy to Four U.S. Dealerships
November 10, 2014, 10:58 AM
Disney Reveals Star Wars Ep. VII Title -- "The Force Awakens"
November 6, 2014, 3:45 PM
U.S. Navy Lockheed F-35C Completes First Carrier Landing
November 4, 2014, 12:44 PM
Microsoft Co-founder Paul Allen Donates $100M to Fight Raging Ebola Epidemic
October 23, 2014, 6:05 PM
Most Popular Articles
FTC Announces Crackdown on Computer Speedup/Tech Support Scams
November 20, 2014, 1:40 PM
Xiaomi Aims to be #1 Smartphone OEM Within 10 Years, Apple Urges Caution
November 21, 2014, 9:33 AM
Quick Note: GM Teases Next Generation Chevrolet Volt
November 20, 2014, 3:26 PM
Apple Replaces “FREE” Label with “GET” on App Downloads in iTunes App Store
November 19, 2014, 5:38 PM
Top Obama Admin DOJ Official to Apple, Google: Encryption Will Lead to Dead Kids
November 20, 2014, 12:34 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information