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Biomedical Optics & Medical Imaging

Printed soft-electronics for remote body monitoring

A presentation from SPIE Optics + Photonics 2017.

29 September 2017, SPIE Newsroom. DOI: 10.1117/2.2201709.06
from OP presentation, M. Mantysalo,  TTY

Research in the field of skin-conformable electronics has grown rapidly in recent years. Wrist- and head-worn devices and textile integration are common technologies for unobtrusive measuring in sports and healthcare sectors. Body monitoring systems are shrinking in size, becoming softer, and being integrated more seamlessly with human skin.

"One of the megatrends today is digitalization of healthcare," said Matti Mäntysalo of Tampere University of Technology in a talk on printed soft-electronics for remote body system monitoring at SPIE Optics + Photonics 2017.

"Because our population is aging," he said, "we need to provide better accessibility to healthcare without increasing the cost of healthcare. Digitalization of healthcare is believed to happen through wearable electronics, such as wrist devices or textile electronics, and then integrating those with cloud computing."

The next paradigm shift in wearable electronics is going to be epidermal electronic systems (EES) enabled by recent advances in flexible and stretchable electronics technologies. EES can conform to temporary transfer tattoos and deform with the skin without detachment or fracture.

Monty Mantysalo_Printed soft-electronics for remote body monitoring

Mäntysalo and his colleagues at the Printable Electronics Research Group at Tampere have been investigating printed stretchable electronics, printed hybrid electronics, quality and performance, reliability, and failure analyses.

The system presented by Mäntysalo looks like an L-shaped strip with four leads. Data is collected and sent to mobile device, which sends that information to the cloud where a number of pipelines compute the data into algorithms the user can easily read. That data can then be sent to the doctor if necessary.

"This system offers hospital-level accuracy, unobtrusive measurement, and is customizable to the individual," said Mäntysalo.

SPIE Optics + Photonics 2017, 6-10 August in San Diego, CA (USA), featured 3300 technical presentations on light-based technologies in 69 conferences. It was also the venue for a three-day industry exhibition with 180 companies; a two-day Career Center job fair; 34 courses and workshops; and several networking opportunities for professionals and students. Read more news from SPIE Optics + Photonics 2017.

SPIE Optics + Photonics 2018 will run 19-23 August in San Diego.