Zhenan Bao, a professor of chemical engineering at Stanford is working to develop electronic materials that mimic the skin’s ability to sense touch, flex, stretch, biodegrade and self-heal.
In this video, Bao shares how her team’s research could improve our ability to monitor health, and potentially add a sense of touch to prosthetic limbs.read more: Stanford University
“We take skin for granted but it’s a complex sensing, signaling and decision-making system,” says Stanford chemical engineering professor Zhenan Bao. “This artificial sensory nerve system is a step toward making skin-like sensory neural networks for all sorts of applications.”
The heart of the technique is a two-ply plastic construct: the top layer creates a sensing mechanism and the bottom layer acts as the circuit to transport electrical signals and translate them into biochemical stimuli compatible with nerve cells. The top layer in the new work featured a sensor that can detect pressure over the same range as human skin, from a light finger tap to a firm handshake.