(a) elastomer enhanced with 2D nanoparticles is highly flexible; (b) elastomer sensor attached to arm to track the movement of fingers; (c) change in current value through the sensor due to finger motions
Conductive elastomeric polymer and rubber-based composites enhanced with graphene and other 2D nanoparticle fillers are capable of withstanding large strain in multiple directions, therefore they have shown tremendous promise as flexible sensors. However, conventional methods to produce 2D nanoparticles are expensive and mixing 2D nanoparticles with elastomers and rubber is difficult, typically producing inhomogeneous mixtures which show agglomeration in the matrix.
Researchers from Rutgers University have developed an inexpensive and scalable method for preparing elastomers filled with in situ formed conductive 2D nanoparticles. The 2D nanoparticles are well-distributed within the polymer matrix and upon curing, elastomer nanocomposites provide beneficial electromechanical and thermal properties. It has been demonstrated that the elastomer sensor is capable of detecting small movements like pulse and finger motions with high sensitivity. Additionally, the sensor can detect chemicals through electromechanical changes due to swelling.
- Strain sensor for human motion monitoring
- Sensor for touch screen displays
- Temperature sensing
- Pressure and flow sensing
- Chemical sensing
- Inexpensive and scalable fabrication
- Highly flexible
- High sensitivity and minimal hysteresis
Intellectual Property & Development Status:
Patent pending. Available for licensing and/or collaboration.