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Sci Transl Med. 2018 Apr 4;10(435). pii: eaan4950. doi: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aan4950.

Battery-free, wireless sensors for full-body pressure and temperature mapping.

Author information

1
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801, USA.
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ajou University, San 5, Woncheon-Dong, Yeongtong-Gu, Suwon 16499, Republic of Korea.
3
Department of Electronics Convergence Engineering, Kwangwoon University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
4
Applied Mechanics Laboratory, Department of Engineering Mechanics, Center for Mechanics and Materials, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China.
5
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208, USA.
6
Departments of Materials Science and Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Neurological Surgery, Chemistry, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; Center for Bio-Integrated Electronics; Simpson Querrey Institute for Nano/Biotechnology; Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208, USA.
7
Neurology and Sleep Medicine Carle Physician Group, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801, USA.
8
School of Materials Science and Engineering, Pusan National University, Busan 609-735, Republic of Korea.
9
Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, School of Mechanical Engineering, Center for Implantable Devices, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA.
10
Department of Engineering Mechanics, Southeast University, Nanjing 210096, China.
11
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60208, USA. y-huang@northwestern.edu jrogers@northwestern.edu.
12
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801, USA. y-huang@northwestern.edu jrogers@northwestern.edu.

Abstract

Thin, soft, skin-like sensors capable of precise, continuous measurements of physiological health have broad potential relevance to clinical health care. Use of sensors distributed over a wide area for full-body, spatiotemporal mapping of physiological processes would be a considerable advance for this field. We introduce materials, device designs, wireless power delivery and communication strategies, and overall system architectures for skin-like, battery-free sensors of temperature and pressure that can be used across the entire body. Combined experimental and theoretical investigations of the sensor operation and the modes for wireless addressing define the key features of these systems. Studies with human subjects in clinical sleep laboratories and in adjustable hospital beds demonstrate functionality of the sensors, with potential implications for monitoring of circadian cycles and mitigating risks for pressure-induced skin ulcers.

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