Chemical Engineering and Industrial Chemistry

Inkjet-printed flexible piezoelectric sensor for self-powered biomedical monitoring



Printed electronics has opened up new insights towards fabrication of electronic components and devices. This manufacturing technique has been successfully employed as a complementary fabrication approach to conventional nanolithography and microfabrication processes to create flexible and stretchable electronics. Fluoropolymers are crucial components in electronic manufacturing, owing to their piezoelectric, triboelectric, pyroelectric, ferroelectric, and dielectric properties. In this research, we report fabrication of an inkjet-printed piezoelectric sensor based on poly(vinylidenefluoride trifluoroethylene) (PVDF-TrFE) and amine functionalized graphene oxide (AGO) for biomedical monitoring. The piezoelectric inkjet ink was obtained by optimizing the fluid mechanic properties based on Reynold and Weber numbers. The inkjet-printed freestanding film was characterized by atomic force microscopy (AFM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), wide-angle X-Ray scattering (WAXS), and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The piezoelectric sensor was fabricated out of the printed film by painting electrodes on each side, followed by wiring and encapsulation. The sensor was subjected to an electric field of 1500 kV/cm to align the internal dipoles and induce a net polarization. The obtained flexible piezoelectric sensor was employed for monitoring biomedical signals such as finger tapping, joint bending, and swallowing.


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