US-based Rotex Incorporation, a biotechnology firm has upped the stakes when it comes to wirelessly controlling devices, as they have unveiled a disposable electronic tattoo that can be used to give instructions and pass information to systems.
The electronic tattoos are actually sequences of ultra-thin and soft sensors that can form to the skin and respond to slight muscle movement.
‘Smart Tattoo’ can measure in real-time, ECG, respiration, hydration, temperature, blood pressure, blood oxygen satuation, skin hydration etc. It’s a thinnest, softest, and lightest biometric sensor platform; imperceptible wearables designed for long-term use.
No other equipment is needed for the tattoo to perform its monitoring, though a small auxiliary device about the size of a package of gum is used to read the recorded data. That device can then send the data to your smartphone or computer for further analysis. The tattoos are temporary, but should last a full week, surviving showers and regular exercise.
Electronic Tattoos is, according to Joël de Rosnay, an extraordinary demonstration of the fusion of two worlds: the digital world and the biological world.
Monitoring patients’ vital signs, communicating with medical staff or even commanding devices through epidermal electronics.
Better integrating electronics with human tissue holds out the promise of monitoring the body more conveniently and accurately than is possible with sensors that are worn or taped on.
The circuits are printed onto silicone that’s supported by a stiffer layer of water-soluble polymer. When the patch is placed on dry skin and then wetted, the polymer layer dissolves; intermolecular attractions between the silicone and skin make the silicone adhere tightly. In tests, the silicone patches have adhered to skin for a week, hanging on even through showers and exercise. And the patches don’t irritate skin the way adhesives often do.