Battery-free, stretchable optoelectronic systems for wireless optical characterization of the skin

Jeonghyun Kim, Giovanni A. Salvatore, Hitoshi Araki, Antonio M. Chiarelli, Zhaoqian Xie, Anthony Banks, Xing Sheng, Yuhao Liu, Jung Woo Lee, Kyung In Jang, Seung Yun Heo, Kyoungyeon Cho, Hongying Luo, Benjamin Zimmerman, Joonhee Kim, Lingqing Yan, Xue Feng, Sheng Xu, Monica Fabiani, Gabriele GrattonYonggang Huang, Ungyu Paik, John A. Rogers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent advances in materials, mechanics, and electronic device design are rapidly establishing the foundations for health monitoring technologies that have “skin-like” properties, with options in chronic (weeks) integration with the epidermis. The resulting capabilities in physiological sensing greatly exceed those possible with conventional hard electronic systems, such as those found in wrist-mounted wearables, because of the intimate skin interface. However, most examples of such emerging classes of devices require batteries and/or hard-wired connections to enable operation. The work reported here introduces active optoelectronic systems that function without batteries and in an entirely wireless mode, with examples in thin, stretchable platforms designed for multiwavelength optical characterization of the skin. Magnetic inductive coupling and near-field communication (NFC) schemes deliver power to multicolored light-emitting diodes and extract digital data from integrated photodetectors in ways that are compatible with standard NFC-enabled platforms, such as smartphones and tablet computers. Examples in the monitoring of heart rate and temporal dynamics of arterial blood flow, in quantifying tissue oxygenation and ultraviolet dosimetry, and in performing four-color spectroscopic evaluation of the skin demonstrate the versatility of these concepts. The results have potential relevance in both hospital care and at-home diagnostics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere1600418
JournalScience Advances
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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