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Proceedings Paper

EHD as sensor fabrication technology for robotic skins
Author(s): Jeongsik Shin; Woo Ho Lee; Caleb Nothnagle; Muthu B. J. Wijesundara
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Paper Abstract

Human-robot interaction can be made more sophisticated and intuitive if the entire body of a robot is covered with multimodal sensors embedded in artificial skin. In order to efficiently interact with humans in unstructured environments, robotic skin may require sensors such as touch, impact, and proximity. Integration of various types of sensors into robotic skin is challenging due to the topographical nature of skin. Printing is a promising technology that can be explored for sensor integration as it may allow both sensors and interconnects to be directly printed into the skin. We are developing Electrohydrodynamic (EHD) inkjet printing technology in order to co-fabricate various devices onto a single substrate. Using strong applied electrostatic forces, EHD allows the printing of microscale features from a wide array of materials with viscosities ranging from 100 to 1000cP, highly beneficial for multilateral integration. Thus far we have demonstrated EHD’s capability at printing patterns of Poly(2,3-dihydrothieno-1,4-dioxin)-poly(styrenesulfonate) for pressure sensor applications, generating patterns with modified commercial photoresist for mask-less lithography, and obtaining ZnO microstructures for direct device printing. Printed geometries range from a few tens of microns to millimeters. We have used inks with viscosities ranging from 230 to 520cp and from non-conductive to 135μS/cm. These results clearly show that the EHD is a promising multi-material printing platform and would be an enabling technology that can be used to co-fabricate various devices into robotic skin.

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 June 2014
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9116, Next-Generation Robots and Systems, 91160F (4 June 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2053429
Show Author Affiliations
Jeongsik Shin, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Woo Ho Lee, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Caleb Nothnagle, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)
Muthu B. J. Wijesundara, The Univ. of Texas at Arlington Research Institute (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9116:
Next-Generation Robots and Systems
Dan O. Popa; Muthu B. J. Wijesundara, Editor(s)

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