Stanford’s Stick-on Wireless Sensor BodyNet, Tracks your Health

Stanford’s Stick-on Wireless Sensor BodyNet, Tracks your Health

Stanford engineers have developed flexible wireless sensor called BodyNet, which sticks to the skin to pick up physiological signals &; it wirelessly transfers the health readings to a receiver clipped onto clothing.

The sensor is made of metallic ink laid on top of a flexible material like an adhesive bandage. This system relies on how it is itself stretched and compressed. These movements cause tiny changes in how passes through the ink, changes that are relayed to a processor nearby.

For flat, relatively simple electronics, roll-to-roll is a great technique, essentially printing the sensors right onto a flexible plastic substrate that can then simply be cut to size. This way they can make hundreds or thousands of the sensors quickly and cheaply, making them much simpler to deploy at arbitrary scales.

Postdoctoral scholars Simiao Niu and Naoji Matsuhisa led the 14-person team that spent three years designing the sensors. Their goal was to develop a technology that would be comfortable to wear and have no batteries or rigid circuits to prevent the stickers from stretching and contracting with the skin.

The BodyNet sticker has an antenna that harvests a of the incoming RFID energy from a receiver on the clothing to power its sensors. It then takes readings from the skin and beams them back to the nearby receiver.

The Stanford researchers developed a new type of RFID system that could beam strong and accurate signals to the receiver despite constant fluctuations. The battery-powered receiver then uses Bluetooth to periodically upload data from the stickers to a smartphone, computer or other permanent storage system.

To move their technology beyond clinical applications and into consumer-friendly devices, the researchers need to keep the sensor and receiver close to each other. In their experiments, the researchers clipped a receiver on clothing just above each sensor. One-to-one pairings of sensors and receivers would be fine in medical monitoring, but to create a BodyNet that someone could wear while exercising, antennas would have to be woven into clothing to receive and transmit signals no matter where a person sticks a sensor.

The paper describing Stanford’s flexible sensor appeared this week in the journal Nature Electronics, while Berkeley’s sweat tracker was in Science Advances.

Credits: https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/16/flexible-stick-on-sensors-could-wirelessly-monitor-your-sweat-and-pulse/ , https://news.stanford.edu/2019/08/16/wireless-sensors-stick-skin-track-health/

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Stanford's Stick-on Wireless Sensor BodyNet, Tracks your Health
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Stanford's Stick-on Wireless Sensor BodyNet, Tracks your Health
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Stanford engineers have developed flexible wireless sensor called BodyNet, which sticks to the skin to pick up physiological signals & it wirelessly transfers the health readings to a receiver clipped onto clothing.
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