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Sensors 2017, 17(12), 2924; doi:10.3390/s17122924

POFBG-Embedded Cork Insole for Plantar Pressure Monitoring

1
Department of Physics & I3N, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
2
Nanophotonics Research Laboratory, Cyprus University of Technology, Limassol 3036, Cyprus
3
Instituto de Telecomunicações, Campus Universitário de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
4
Telecommunications Laboratory, Electrical Engineering Department, Federal University of Espírito Santo, Fernando Ferrari Avenue, Vitoria 29075-910, ES, Brazil
5
Centro de Automática y Robótica, CSIC-UPM, Ctra. Campo Real, Arganda del Rey, 28500 Madrid, Spain
6
Instituto de Telecomunicações and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Instituto Superior Técnico, University of Lisbon, 1049-001 Lisbon, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 11 December 2017 / Accepted: 14 December 2017 / Published: 16 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fiber Bragg Grating Based Sensors)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2902 KB, uploaded 16 December 2017]   |  

Abstract

We propose a novel polymer optical fiber (POF) sensing system based on fiber Bragg gratings (FBGs) to measure foot plantar pressure. The plantar pressure signals are detected by five FBGs, in the same piece of cyclic transparent optical polymer (CYTOP) fiber, which are embedded in a cork insole for the dynamic monitoring of gait. The calibration and measurements performed with the suggested system are presented, and the results obtained demonstrate the accuracy and reliability of the sensing platform to monitor the foot plantar pressure distribution during gait motion and the application of pressure. This architecture does not compromise the patient’s mobility nor interfere in their daily activities. The results using the CYTOP fiber showed a very good response when compared with solutions using silica optical fibers, resulting in a sensitivity almost twice as high, with excellent repeatability and ease of handling. The advantages of POF (e.g., high flexibility and robustness) proved that this is a viable solution for this type of application, since POF’s high fracture toughness enables its application in monitoring patients with higher body mass compared with similar systems based on silica fiber. This study has demonstrated the viability of the proposed system based on POF technology as a useful alternative for plantar pressure detection systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: polymer optical fiber; gait plantar pressure; CYTOP; physical rehabilitation; optical fiber sensors; insole fiber Bragg gratings network polymer optical fiber; gait plantar pressure; CYTOP; physical rehabilitation; optical fiber sensors; insole fiber Bragg gratings network
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Vilarinho, D.; Theodosiou, A.; Leitão, C.; Leal-Junior, A.G.; Domingues, M.F.; Kalli, K.; André, P.; Antunes, P.; Marques, C. POFBG-Embedded Cork Insole for Plantar Pressure Monitoring. Sensors 2017, 17, 2924.

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