Electronic Skins – Flexible and AmazingPosted: August 15, 2013 Filed under: Materials Research | Tags: dynamics surfaces, electronic skin, flexible surfaces, future of electronics, sensory skins, smart materials Leave a comment
Ok, so my mind has just been blown. We all know flexible electronics are on their way. It isn’t all that innovative to imagine, but heck, when you actually see a picture of a super thin conductive surface working, it is pretty amazing.
Lightweight and Indestructible
Nature just posted a huge article on a thin film sensory material with impressive images of it floating to the ground like a feather, or pressed into the roof of a mouth (cast) to take up the exact form and gather information. It is hard not to get excited! The image with the feather is amazing for the concept that future electronics could be extremely tough, not because they are built out of bullet proof material, but because it is so light it will never fall hard enough to break. Now that is some divergent thinking.
Smart Surfaces Everywhere
Science Fiction writers and day dreamers have always enjoyed the idea of smart surfaces, whether dystopic visions of walls customizing advertising and subversive drugs as you wander past, or the utopia of perfect healthcare and 100% safe public spaces. It is curious to consider where the early adoption of this technology will truly be. Will it be in sports, testing injuries and tracking athlete’s movements? Will we get to see hot spot pressure mapping of a basket baller’s footwork as they drive the lane? That’s an infographic the world truly needs.
Flexible Surface with Constant Communication
Below is an image from another research paper, that is not open to public review unfortunately, but does show some research into a flexible display that can capture and communicate live information. Where the above illustrates how thin and light the sensory film can become, below shows a fully integrated device or surface that can sense and signal on the go. Also amazing. My new favourite terminology is:
“a network of mechanically flexible sensors that can conformally wrap irregular surfaces and spatially map and quantify various stimuli”