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Wearable sensors printed directly onto skin
Flexible electronics have opened up some interesting possibilities when it comes to wearable sensors that can be applied to the skin, taking the form of tattoo-like films and sleeves that monitor various aspects of human health. Scientists at Penn State University have now developed one they say can be safely printed directly onto the skin, where it can track things like body temperature and blood oxygen levels, before being washed off once the job is done.
This flexible circuit maintains its electrochemical properties and can be tuned to continuously record data on temperature, humidity, blood oxygen and heart signals, according to the team. Once the job is done, the sensor can simply be washed away using hot water.
"It could be recycled, since removal doesn’t damage the device" says Huanyu Cheng, who led the research. And, importantly, removal doesn’t damage the skin, either.