In spite of the numerous research efforts regarding the development of miniaturized, low-cost, and highly sensitive sensors based on different organic and semiconducting materials, carbon nanotubes still remain the most promising ones. An international team of researchers has now developed a simple way for fabrication and operation of carbon nanotube-based chemical sensors. The sensor consists of carboxylated single-walled carbon nanotubes, which were spin-coated over the polymer substrate between sputtered metal electrodes.
Researchers have demonstrated a fully integrated and packaged wireless sensor for environmental monitoring applications. The disposable sensor was developed using low-cost additive manufacturing technologies; namely, inkjet printing and 3D printing. This is a demonstration of 3D-printed fully-integrated System-on-Package (SoP) employing inkjet-printed sensors. This work could pave the way for low-cost disposable fully integrated wireless sensor nodes.
Research groups around the world are taking big strides towards developing ultrathin and flexible sensor devices that could be attached to the skin, or even organs, and monitor vital body functions. However, the adhesion to skin of many of these sensor patches is weak. A new milestone study on skin adhesives for wearable devices is about to change that. It demonstrates that it is possible to strongly and non-invasively attach soft wearable sensors and other devices to dry or wet skin.
Metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) are regarded as a new class of porous materials with significant prospects for addressing current challenges pertinent to energy and environmental sustainability. Due to their unique structure design and tunability, MOFs offer great potential for their effective integration and exploration in various sensing applications. Researchers have demonstrated this by developing an advanced sensor for the detection of hydrogen sulfide at room temperature, using thin films of rare-earth metal based MOF.
Paper, probably the cheapest and most widely used flexible and eco-friendly material in daily life, is a promising substrate for making flexible devices ranging from electronics to microfluidics, energy storage and sensors. In new work, researchers have developed a new and reliable method to achieve conformal coating of individual cellulose fibers in the paper and the fabrication of a metal electrode via patterning of gold and silver layers on the coated paper.
A skin-like, wearable system combines colorimetric and electronic function for precise dosimetry in the UV-A and UV-B regions of the spectrum. This platform is suitable for determination of instantaneous UV exposure levels and skin temperature. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation is a major risk factor for most skin cancers. UV rays damage the DNA of skin cells. Skin cancers start when this damage affects the DNA of genes that control skin cell growth. Creating awareness in UV exposure is widely believed to be an important aspect in improving skin health.
Carbon nanotube enabled nanocomposites have received much attention as a highly attractive alternative to conventional composite materials due to their mechanical, electrical, thermal, barrier and chemical properties such as electrical conductivity, increased tensile strength, improved heat deflection temperature, or flame retardancy. In new work, researchers report the fabrication of highly conductive carbon nanotube/polylactic acid nanocomposites used as 3D printable conductive inks for fabrication of conductive scaffold structures applicable as liquid sensors.
Point-of-care diagnostics, food safety screening, and environmental monitoring will massively benefit from the label-free, inexpensive, rapid, handheld sensor devices that are currently under development. To date, there has been a lot of work reported on either SERS or plasmonic sensing but very few have reported sensing with the same device for both SERS and plasmonics, let alone plasmonic colorimetry naked-eye sensing. For the first time ever, researchers have reported the combination of naked-eye plasmonic colorimetry and high-enhancement and high-uniformity SERS in one sensor.