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Unobtrusive printed piezoelectric sensors for non-invasive biosignal monitoring

Project description

New sensors for cardiovascular disease monitoring

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide. Innovations for their prevention, monitoring and treatment are extremely important. Most recently, the focus has been on monitoring solutions such as biosignal sensors to detect signs of cardiovascular diseases earlier and commence treatment sooner. Unfortunately, current biosignal sensors are too large, obtrusive and costly for widespread use. The EU-funded UNOPIEZO project will address this by developing ultra-thin piezoelectric polymer based biosignal sensors. The sensors will use printed electronics fabrication technologies. These sensors will be unobtrusive, energy- and cost-efficient and safer for the environment while also being more accurate.


Goal: The goal of this project is to develop unobtrusive, affordable and accurate piezoelectric sensors for non-invasive biosignal monitoring.

Background: Continuous large-scale health monitoring of risk population carries significant benefits to the society, but is hindered by the lack of unobtrusive, affordable and accurate biosignal sensors. As an example, continuous monitoring of radial arterial pulse wave (PW) signal could enable early detection of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs, most common cause of death) and lead to significant reductions in societal costs associated with their treatment and current screening methods, both of which require hospital visits. Ultra-thin (t < 10 µm) sensors have been recently proposed to enhance the user comfort by recording the PW-signal non-invasively from the skin deformation caused by the pulsating radial/carotid artery located directly underneath the skin. Although the proposed devices have high potential for continuous PW-monitoring due to their unobtrusiveness, they suffer from drawbacks such as high energy consumption, costly fabrication, biocompatibility issues and/or low sensitivity.

Proposal: In order to meet the requirements of unobtrusiveness, affordability and accuracy, it is proposed that such biosignal sensors should be fabricated of piezoelectric polymer P(VDF-TrFE) using printed electronics fabrication technologies. The optical transparency and biocompatibility of P(VDF-TrFE) coupled with ultra-thin form factor of the device should result in sensors that are highly unobtrusive for the user. Furthermore, the ultra-thin form factor coupled with novel charge collector structure should maximize the sensor sensitivity, thereby increasing the accuracy of the biosignal measurement beyond the capabilities of conventional sensor structures. The sensor fabrication with additive and scalable printed electronics fabrication technologies should result in devices that are affordable for the user and for the environment.


Net EU contribution
€ 198 631,68
33100 Tampere

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Manner-Suomi Länsi-Suomi Pirkanmaa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 198 631,68

Partners (1)