Nowadays, the stretchability requirement for healthcare monitoring devices (e.g., implantable, wearable) has acquired increased interest among researchers. Up to now, mostly non-electrochemical stretchable devices have been developed for sensing parameters of medical interest as human temperature, human movements, beating of the hearth. No intensive studies on stretchable electrochemical devices have been reported so far.
In this project, the student will work on the design of electrodes based on innovative geometries and structural material characteristics at the nanoscale to obtain stretchable electrochemical sensors with reliable sensing performance.
More in detail, the student will use commercial stretchable inks based on carbon or metal nanomaterials (e.g., Ag, Au, Pt), polymers and other additives to inkjet printing electrodes. The final goal is to develop electrodes with a strong adherence to the substrate and to prevent peeling and cracking during mechanical tests. Electrodes with various geometries and areas will be fabricated on PDMS. Morphological characteristics and electrochemical performance of the printed electrodes will be studies after and during linear and radial stretching and bending. The printed electrodes will be used for sensing compounds of interest in healthcare such as glucose, lactate and ions.
- Selection of different commercial inks for printing electrodes
- Design (layout) and fabrication (ink jet) of electrodes on PDMS
- Mechanical tests of the devices (linear and radial stretching, bending)
- Morphological characterization of the electrodes before and after mechanical tests
- Electrochemical characterization of the electrodes before and after mechanical tests
- Course-level knowledge in polymer science
- Course-level knowledge in nanotechnology
- Basic knowledge of mechanical tests
- Basic knowledge of electrochemistry
- Interest and motivation