Technology 3 min read

Researchers Make Electronic Skin Display That can Transmit Data

University of Tokyo

University of Tokyo

Researchers from Japan have reportedly created an electronic skin display that can show the wearer’s vital health stats.

Researchers from the University of Tokyo in Japan have developed an electronic skin display that can be used to monitor patients’ health. The artificial patch of skin is said to be ultrathin and made from a flexible, breathable material capable of measuring and displaying a person’s heart rate in real time.

The artificial skin patch features a micro-LED array made from nanomesh electrodes and stretchable wiring. It can bend with the skin and display simple, animated, imagery like an electrocardiogram waveform.

Read More: Fully Recyclable, Self-Healing Electronic Skin Developed

According to the researchers, the idea behind their innovation is not only for the e-skin to show the wearer’s health stats. In case of a medical emergency, the e-skin should be able to let others know what the problem is specifically.

Furthermore, the e-skin display sticks securely to the skin and can last for a week without causing any inflammation. This feature supposedly makes the new artificial skin patch far better than existing stretchable displays that typically fall apart after being exposed to minor wear and tear.

Researchers from the University of #Tokyo have developed an electronic skin display that can be used to monitor vital health stats. @UTokyo_News_en #WearableClick To Tweet

The Electronic Skin Display

According to reports, the new electronic skin display has enhanced information accessibility for the elderly and infirm. It provides a level of clarity to patients who often have difficulty using and gathering data from similar devices and interfaces today.

It also offers an alternative solution to ease the strain on home healthcare systems in aging societies by providing a non-invasive health monitoring option.

“The current aging society requires user-friendly wearable sensors for monitoring patient vitals in order to reduce the burden on patients and family members providing nursing care,” Professor Takao Someya from the University of Tokyo, said. “Our system could serve as one of the long-awaited solutions to fulfill this need, which will ultimately lead to improving the quality of life for many.”

The medical data, such as an electrocardiogram, measured by the sensors in the electronic skin display can be sent wirelessly to a smartphone for quick viewing or be stored in the cloud. The electronic device was developed by the University of Tokyo in collaboration with Dai Nippon Printing, one of Japan’s top printing companies.

The e-skin is composed of a 16 by 24 array of micro LEDs and stretchable wiring attached to a rubber sheet. The display could be stretched to as much as 45% of its original length.

“Our skin display exhibits simple graphics with motion,” Someya went on to say. “Because it is made from thin and soft materials, it can be deformed freely.”

The new patch is said to be the first stretchable display to achieve superior durability and stability in air.

“Not a single pixel failed in the matrix-type display while attached snugly onto the skin and continuously subjected to the stretching and contracting motion of the body,” TechXplore reported.

Dai Nippon Printing is already planning to offer the electronic skin display to the public in the next three years. The researchers are now working on making it more reliable and scalable by improving and expanding its surface area coverage.

In what areas of health care do you think this new electronic skin display could be used?

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Chelle Fuertes

Chelle is the Product Management Lead at INK. She's an experienced SEO professional as well as UX researcher and designer. She enjoys traveling and spending time anywhere near the sea with her family and friends.

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