An all-around motion sensor from graphene fiber

by | Oct 26, 2015

Researchers in China make a stretchable graphene-based motion sensor that can monitor all types of human activities with ultrahigh sensitivity.

(Copyright Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, used here with permission. Please click here to watch the video on Youku if you are unable to access Youtube)

graphene_sensorFlexible motion sensors that detect and differentiate mechanical deformations are in high demand in kinesthetic sensing, personal health monitoring, smart prosthetics/robotics, and human-computer interaction. Jing Sun and co-workers at Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, devise a flexible and stretchable fiber based on graphene with “compression spring” architecture.

This fiber sensor features both ultrahigh sensitivity (0.2% tensile strain) and wide sensing range (100% strain), enabling it to capture full-range human activities, from motions as subtle as pulses, to those as vigorous as walking and jumping. In addition, the fiber sensor is also capable of detecting bending and torsion deformation, and can thus be used for sensing complex motions, such as joint bending and twisting of humans and robots. Especially noteworthy is that, the fabrication strategy is facile, scalable and low-cost, which sets the stage for its practical and widespread use in daily life.