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Stretchy Wearable Patch Allows Two-Way Communication with Robots

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Schematic exploded view of an ultrathin multifunctional HMI device.

A new flexible wearable electronics patch translates the wearer's movements into instructions to a robot, and in turn receives temperature feedback.

Credit: K. Sim et al

University of Houston researchers have developed a flexible wearable electronics patch that translates the wearer's movements and other instructions to a robot, and in turn receives temperature feedback from the machine.

The researchers applied a low-temperature manufacturing process to fabricate transistors, resistive random-access memory cells, strain sensors, ultraviolet-light detectors, temperature sensors, and heaters, which they combined into a 4-micrometer-thick adhesive patch.

When affixed to a volunteer's hand, the patch causes a robot hand to open or close, based on the strain sensor's reaction to the volunteer's hand movements.

The patch's components are made from indium zinc oxide.

Said the university’s Cunjiang Yu, “Traditionally, to achieve multiple functions you might need the heterogeneous integration of materials, or multiple chips together. But now using one material you can do all this.”

From IEEE Spectrum
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


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