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Epidermal electronics for health and fitness monitoring
Keywords: flexible, packaging, health
Medical deployment of electronics is frequently hampered by boxy, rigid packaging. The underlying issue is that biological tissues are soft and curved, while electronic components are hard and angular. The mechanical mismatch can be alleviated by re-packaging electronics in radical new form factors. MC10 has developed a technology platform using ultra-thin components linked with flexible interconnects and embedded in low modulus polymers which provide an excellent match to biological tissues. The MC10 platform is very different from approaches based on developing plastic or paper transistors, which will require years of development to achieve the performance, reproducibility and reliability of today's silicon. Instead, the platform is based on using existing high-performance active components in new mechanical form factors. The platform has three key components: thin silicon for flexibility, silicon transfer from foundry CMOS wafers to polymer-coated carriers, and flexible metallic interconnect on polymer. On-body and in-body applications are both well suited to the technology platform. Skin-mounted systems resemble electronic tattoos, and can be worn for extended periods without discomfort while providing continuous monitoring. Inside the body, instrumented catheters provide an interventionist with unprecedented electrical information about the interior of the heart. Examples of both systems will be described.
Conor Rafferty, Director of Technology Development
MC10, Inc
Cambridge, Massachusetts

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