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Nat Commun ; 12(1): 5008, 2021 08 24.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34429436


Capabilities for continuous monitoring of pressures and temperatures at critical skin interfaces can help to guide care strategies that minimize the potential for pressure injuries in hospitalized patients or in individuals confined to the bed. This paper introduces a soft, skin-mountable class of sensor system for this purpose. The design includes a pressure-responsive element based on membrane deflection and a battery-free, wireless mode of operation capable of multi-site measurements at strategic locations across the body. Such devices yield continuous, simultaneous readings of pressure and temperature in a sequential readout scheme from a pair of primary antennas mounted under the bedding and connected to a wireless reader and a multiplexer located at the bedside. Experimental evaluation of the sensor and the complete system includes benchtop measurements and numerical simulations of the key features. Clinical trials involving two hemiplegic patients and a tetraplegic patient demonstrate the feasibility, functionality and long-term stability of this technology in operating hospital settings.

Técnicas Biossensoriais/métodos , Fontes de Energia Elétrica , Pressão , Temperatura , Tecnologia sem Fio , Adulto , Idoso , Idoso de 80 Anos ou mais , Técnicas Biossensoriais/instrumentação , Desenho de Equipamento , Feminino , Humanos , Masculino , Pessoa de Meia-Idade , Monitorização Fisiológica , Pele , Termografia/instrumentação , Termografia/métodos
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33983698


Over the years, numerous studies have attempted to develop two-dimensional (2D) materials for improving both the applicability and performance of thermoelectric devices. Among the 2D materials, graphene is one of the promising candidates for thermoelectric materials owing to its extraordinary electrical properties, flexibility, and nontoxicity. However, graphene synthesized through traditional methods suffers from a low Seebeck coefficient and high thermal conductivity, resulting in an extremely low thermoelectric figure of merit (ZT). Here, we present an atomic-scale defect engineering strategy to improve the thermoelectric properties of graphene using embedded high-angle tilt boundary (HATB) domains in graphene films. These HATB domains serve as both energy filtering sites to filter out lower-energy charge carriers and scattering sites for phonons. Compared to the conventionally grown chemical vapor deposited graphene, the graphene with HATB domains shows an improved Seebeck coefficient (50.1 vs 21.1 µV K-1) and reduced thermal conductivity (382 vs 952 W m-1K-1), resulting in a ZT value that is ∼7 times greater at 350 K. This defect engineering strategy is promising not only for graphene-based materials but also for 2D materials, in general, where further research and optimization could overcome the limitations of conventional bulk thermoelectric materials in energy-harvesting systems.

ACS Nano ; 14(9): 12173-12183, 2020 Sep 22.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32880440


The cost-effective direct writing of polymer nanofibers (NFs) has garnered considerable research attention as a compelling one-pot strategy for obtaining key building blocks of electrochemical and optical devices. Among the promising applications, the changes in optical response from external stimuli such as mechanical deformation and changes in the thermal environment are of great significance for emerging applications in smart windows, privacy protection, aesthetics, artificial skin, and camouflage. Herein, we propose a rational design for the mass production of customized NFs through the development of focused electric-field polymer writing (FEPW) coupled with the roll-to-roll technique. As a proof of key applications, we demonstrate multistimuli-responsive (mechano- and thermochromism) membranes with an exceptional production scale (over 300 cm2). Specifically, the membranes consist of periodically aligned ultrathin (∼60 nm) alumina nanotubes inserted in the elastomers. We performed a two-phase finite element analysis of the unit cells to verify the underlying physics of light scattering at heterogeneous interfaces of the strain-induced air gaps. By adding thermochromic dye during the FEPW, the optical modulation of transmittance change (∼83% to 37% at visible wavelength) was successfully extended to high-contrast thermal-dependent coloration.