Monitoring patients’ vital signs, communicating with medical staff or even commanding devices through epidermal electronics.
Developed at University of Texas in Austin and other centres, these flexible electronics conform to the skin. They can monitor and transmit vital signs, but also turn tiny muscle movements into commands for electronic devices. Attached to the neck, for example, they can recognise the movements made to say the words “left”, “right”, “up” or “down” to control a game. The prototype can measure effort, temperature and electronic signals. The project team is even looking into adding LEDs or adapting the tattoos to internal medicine to track diseases.