Special Issue "Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application"

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Pedro Costa
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Guest Editor
Institute for Polymers and Composites IPC/I3N, University of Minho, 4800-058 Guimarães, Portugal and Centro/Departamento de Física, Universidade do Minho, Campus de Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
Interests: smart materials; multifunctional materials; stretchable materials
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Vítor Manuel Gomes Correia
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Guest Editor
Centro Algoritmi , Universidade do Minho, Campus Azurém, 4800-058 Guimarães, Portugal and Centro de Física, Universidade do Minho, Campus de Gualtar, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
Interests: printed technologies; smart surfaces; interface electronics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Electronic skin can be defined as any advanced material or system that mimics human skin functionalities in terms of sensing capabilities. Thus, novel electronic materials and processing technologies are being developed, allowing the implementation of stretching, pressure and/or temperature sensors in a large variety of surfaces. Further, electronic skins are the basis for the development of a wide variety of applications, ranging from robotics to the biomedical field, as well as to the development of novel concepts of multifunctional and interactive surfaces.

It is our pleasure to invite you to submit original research papers, short communications or state-of-the-art reviews within the scope of this Special Issue. Contributions can range from fundamentals, processing and characterization of materials, to innovations in processing technologies or the development of applications.

Prof. Dr. Senentxu Lanceros-Méndez
Dr. Pedro Costa
Dr. Vítor Manuel Gomes Correia
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Materials is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • smart materials
  • electronic skin
  • strain sensing
  • multifunctional materials
  • smart surfaces

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Electromechanical Properties of PVDF-Based Polymers Reinforced with Nanocarbonaceous Fillers for Pressure Sensing Applications
Materials 2019, 12(21), 3545; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12213545 - 29 Oct 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Polymer-based composites reinforced with nanocarbonaceous materials can be tailored for functional applications. Poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) reinforced with carbon nanotubes (CNT) or graphene with different filler contents have been developed as potential piezoresistive materials. The mechanical properties of the nanocomposites depend on the PVDF [...] Read more.
Polymer-based composites reinforced with nanocarbonaceous materials can be tailored for functional applications. Poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) reinforced with carbon nanotubes (CNT) or graphene with different filler contents have been developed as potential piezoresistive materials. The mechanical properties of the nanocomposites depend on the PVDF matrix, filler type, and filler content. PVDF 6010 is a relatively more ductile material, whereas PVDF-HFP (hexafluropropylene) shows larger maximum strain near 300% strain for composites with CNT, 10 times higher than the pristine polymer. This behavior is similar for all composites reinforced with CNT. On the other hand, reduced graphene oxide (rGO)/PVDF composites decrease the maximum strain compared to neat PVDF. It is shown that the use of different PVDF copolymers does not influence the electrical properties of the composites. On the other hand, CNT as filler leads to composites with percolation threshold around 0.5 wt.%, whereas rGO nanocomposites show percolation threshold at ≈ 2 wt.%. Both nanocomposites present excellent linearity between applied pressure and resistance variation, with pressure sensibility (PS) decreasing with applied pressure, from PS ≈ 1.1 to 0.2 MPa−1. A proof of concept demonstration is presented, showing the suitability of the materials for industrial pressure sensing applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application)
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Open AccessArticle
Carbonaceous Filler Type and Content Dependence of the Physical-Chemical and Electromechanical Properties of Thermoplastic Elastomer Polymer Composites
Materials 2019, 12(9), 1405; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12091405 - 30 Apr 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Graphene, carbon nanotubes (CNT), and carbon nanofibers (CNF) are the most studied nanocarbonaceous fillers for polymer-based composite fabrication due to their excellent overall properties. The combination of thermoplastic elastomers with excellent mechanical properties (e.g., styrene-b-(ethylene-co-butylene)-b-styrene (SEBS)) and conductive nanofillers such as those mentioned [...] Read more.
Graphene, carbon nanotubes (CNT), and carbon nanofibers (CNF) are the most studied nanocarbonaceous fillers for polymer-based composite fabrication due to their excellent overall properties. The combination of thermoplastic elastomers with excellent mechanical properties (e.g., styrene-b-(ethylene-co-butylene)-b-styrene (SEBS)) and conductive nanofillers such as those mentioned previously opens the way to the preparation of multifunctional materials for large-strain (up to 10% or even above) sensor applications. This work reports on the influence of different nanofillers (CNT, CNF, and graphene) on the properties of a SEBS matrix. It is shown that the overall properties of the composites depend on filler type and content, with special influence on the electrical properties. CNT/SEBS composites presented a percolation threshold near 1 wt.% filler content, whereas CNF and graphene-based composites showed a percolation threshold above 5 wt.%. Maximum strain remained similar for most filler types and contents, except for the largest filler contents (1 wt.% or more) in graphene (G)/SEBS composites, showing a reduction from 600% for SEBS to 150% for 5G/SEBS. Electromechanical properties of CNT/SEBS composite for strains up to 10% showed a gauge factor (GF) varying from 2 to 2.5 for different applied strains. The electrical conductivity of the G and CNF composites at up to 5 wt.% filler content was not suitable for the development of piezoresistive sensing materials. We performed thermal ageing at 120 °C for 1, 24, and 72 h for SEBS and its composites with 5 wt.% nanofiller content in order to evaluate the stability of the material properties for high-temperature applications. The mechanical, thermal, and chemical properties of SEBS and the composites were identical to those of pristine composites, but the electrical conductivity decreased by near one order of magnitude and the GF decreased to values between 0.5 and 1 in aged CNT/SEBS composites. Thus, the materials can still be used as large-deformation sensors, but the reduction of both electrical and electromechanical response has to be considered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application)
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Open AccessArticle
Innovative Strain Sensing for Detection of Exterior Wall Tile Lesion: Smart Skin Sensory System
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2432; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122432 - 30 Nov 2018
Cited by 1
Abstract
Tiles are commonly used to cover the exteriors of buildings in Taiwan. However, older buildings in Taiwan encounter the problem of tiles falling off due to natural deterioration, which is unsightly, and more importantly, a threat to public safety. Nevertheless, no current method [...] Read more.
Tiles are commonly used to cover the exteriors of buildings in Taiwan. However, older buildings in Taiwan encounter the problem of tiles falling off due to natural deterioration, which is unsightly, and more importantly, a threat to public safety. Nevertheless, no current method exists that can effectively detect flaws in building tiles in real time. This study combined the fields of civil engineering and automatic control to reduce risks caused by falling tiles by improving real-time detection of at-risk areas. Micro-resistance was combined with fuzzy theory as the logical foundation for evaluating tile status. String-type strain gauges were adopted as sensors to design a smart skin sensory system that could measure signs of deterioration in tile surface lesions. The design was found to be feasible. In the future, it can be further developed for facile real-time assessment of tile status. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application)
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Open AccessArticle
Highly Integrated All-Fiber FP/FBG Sensor for Accurate Measurement of Strain under High Temperature
Materials 2018, 11(10), 1867; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11101867 - 01 Oct 2018
Cited by 5
Abstract
Accurate measurement of strain is one of the most important issues for high temperature environments. We present a highly integrated all-fiber sensor to achieve precise measurements of strain/high-pressure, which consists of a fiber Bragg grating (FBG) inscribed by an 800 nm femtosecond laser [...] Read more.
Accurate measurement of strain is one of the most important issues for high temperature environments. We present a highly integrated all-fiber sensor to achieve precise measurements of strain/high-pressure, which consists of a fiber Bragg grating (FBG) inscribed by an 800 nm femtosecond laser cascaded with a micro extrinsic Fabry–Perot (FP) cavity fabricated by the 157 nm laser micromachining technique. FBG is sensitive to temperature, but insensitive to strain/pressure, whereas the FP is sensitive to strain/pressure, but has a small dependence on temperature. Therefore, such a cascaded sensor could be used for dual-parameter measurement and can work well at high temperatures. Experimental results indicate that this device exhibits a good strain characteristic at high temperatures and excellent high-pressure performance at room temperature. Due to its highly sensitive wavelength response, the proposed sensor will have remarkable potential applications in dual parameter sensing in harsh environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application)
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Open AccessArticle
Electromechanical Response of High-Performance Fiber-Reinforced Cementitious Composites Containing Milled Glass Fibers under Tension
Materials 2018, 11(7), 1115; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11071115 - 29 Jun 2018
Cited by 2
Abstract
The self-damage sensing capacity of high-performance fiber-reinforced cementitious composites (HPFRCCs) that blended long- (1 vol %) and medium-length (1 vol %) smooth steel fibers was considerably improved by adding milled glass fibers (MGFs) with a low electrical conductivity to a mortar matrix. The [...] Read more.
The self-damage sensing capacity of high-performance fiber-reinforced cementitious composites (HPFRCCs) that blended long- (1 vol %) and medium-length (1 vol %) smooth steel fibers was considerably improved by adding milled glass fibers (MGFs) with a low electrical conductivity to a mortar matrix. The addition of MGFs (5 wt %) significantly increased the electrical resistivity of the mortar matrix from 45.9 to 110.3 kΩ·cm (140%) and consequently improved the self-damage sensing capacity (i.e., the reduction in the electrical resistivity during the tensile strain-hardening response) from 17.27 to 25.56 kΩ·cm (48%). Furthermore, the addition of MGFs improved the equivalent bond strength of the steel fibers on the basis of the higher pullout energy owing to the accumulated cementitious material particles attached to the surfaces of steel fibers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electronic Skin and Its Strain Sensing Application)
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