Electronic Tattoo Monitors Brain, Heart And Muscles

Imagine if there were electronics able to prevent epileptic seizures before they happen, or electronics that could be placed on the surface of a beating heart to monitor its functions. The problem is that such devices are a tough fit. Body tissue is soft and pliable while conventional circuits can be hard and brittle--at least until now. "We're trying to bridge that gap, from silicon, wafer-based electronics to biological, 'tissue-like' electronics, to really blur the distinction between electronics and the body," says materials scientist John Rogers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. With support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), he's developing elastic electronics. The innovation builds upon years of collaboration between Rogers and Northwestern University engineer Yonggang Huang, who had earlier partnered with Rogers to develop flexible electronics for hemispherical camera sensors and other devices that conform to complex shapes.

Provided by the National Science Foundation

Runtime: 2:32

More Science Nation videos

Get Science360's video of the day in your mailbox each weekday.

Sign up now!