Home / News / Zhejiang team uses cold plasma to make wearable sensors
Zhejiang team uses cold plasma to make wearable sensors
Pic: National Graphene Association
Scientists from Bangladesh, China and Pakistan at Zhejiang Sci-Tech University, China, have used cold plasma to make graphene-based wearable sensors. Nonwoven PP-fabrics are often used in wearable articles. Scientists functionalised melt blown-nonwoven polypropylene (NW-PP) membranes to enhance absorption and adhesion of graphene films on the fibre surface.
Melt blown-Nonwoven Polypropylenes based materials have numerous applications, such as nonwoven fabrics, filtration membranes used in clothing and potential industrial use due to its higher breathability, durability, absorbency, or filtration properties. Nonwoven PP-fabrics are very often used to develop wearable articles such as garments.
In this research melt blown-nonwoven polypropylene (NW-PP) membranes were functionalised using (O2) cold plasma for the conversion of highly hydrophobic into hydrophilic nature to enhance the absorption and adhesion of graphene films on the fibre surface. The graphene oxide, (GO) the NW membrane was successfully introduced on the fibrous mat and reduced into reduced Graphene oxide (rGO) with green chemical and thermal reduction. L-ascorbic acid was used as a reducing agent at a low-temperature microwave-assisted reduction at 90 °C. The as developed NW membrane was connected two copper electrodes and used as wearable pressure (WP) sensors.
The physical sensor responds with different stretching and bending cycles under dynamic pressure of loading. The sensitivity of the developed pressure sensor was 0.050 kPa-1 in a wide pressure range (0-60 kPa). The resultant rGO coated NW-PP wearable pressure sensor (RNPWP) is capable of responding to human body movement and motion. The study demonstrates that mass production on an industrial scale graphene-based conductive nonwoven PP fabric potentially replaces the metal-based conductive wearable textiles for physical sensors.