Wednesday, April 27, 2022

E-Skin Market Growth Driven by Rapid Advances in Material Science and Structural Designs


E Skin Market Size Worth USD 34.9 Billion in 2030

Electronic skin, or e skin, refers to a flexible, stretchable, and self-healing electronics that can efficiently mimic functionalities of human or animal skin. Electronic skin has diverse applications in robotics, artificial intelligence, health monitoring technologies, and prosthetics. Development of electronic skin has been a topic of research due to its relevant applications in robotics and in biomedical systems. E-skin basically protects the inner electronic system from damages and convey the mechanical stimulus in a way that is convenient for the sensor arrays. E-skin’s flexible and stretching characteristics facilitate miniaturized semiconductor components such as antennas, light-emitting diodes, compact power sources, and nanoscale drug delivery systems. Over the recent years, tremendous research and development activities have been carried out to develop a synthetic skin with self-healing capabilities similar to natural skin.

E-skin in healthcare sector can be used for prosthetics that can mimic the sense of touch, monitor for life signs, wound care, and in drug delivery. Rapidly aging global population and increasing prevalence of chronic diseases are expected to drive demand for e-skin. E-skin is an ultra-thin, flexible, wearable device that combines data and communication technologies with innovative materials, sensors, and microelectronics. Flexible displays are often integrated into the e-skin to reduce the discomfort associated with wearing bulky external monitoring devices. Over the recent years, many academic and research institutions have invested heavily in developing robust electronic skins. For instance, scientists and researchers at Stanford University of California have developed a very sensitive sensor that can be seamlessly integrated into an e-skin applied to a prosthetic limb. In a similar tandem, scientists from the Korea Institute of Machinery and Materials in South Korea have developed an e-skin for a prosthetic hand that can sense intensity of force, stress, or pressure to help a person recognize shape and texture of an object.

In February 2022, a breakthrough research study was published in the journal Science Robots wherein a team of researchers from Pohang University of Science & Technology (POSTECH) developed an electronic skin that can sense tactility in a way similar to humans. Researchers have developed an artificial sensory receptor that generates spike signals on its own and created an electronic skin that can send signals simultaneously to be analysed in real time. The research study was conducted with backing from Basic Research Laboratory Program and the Brain Convergence Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea.

In a research study published in January 2022, a team of Chinese researchers have created a flexible electronic skin that is equipped with sensors, wireless transmitters, and tiny vibrating magnets that offer haptic feedback to users. Attachment of these patches to various parts of the body such as hand, forearm, or knee can enable the system to record movements of the users and transmit them to robotic devices. The research has been published in the journal Science Advances.

Major companies in the e-skin market include Medidata Solutions, Intellisense Technology, Plastic Logic GmbH, Rotex Global, LLC, Smartlifeinc Limited, VivaLNK, Inc., Xenoma Inc., Xsensio, Chrono Therapeutics Inc., and iRhythm Technologies, Inc. In February 2022, deep tech startup, Touchlab raised £3.5 million in seed funding round. Touchlab develops tactile sensing e-skin for robots. Touchlab’s e-skin is thinner than human skin and can easily be retrofitted without reducing the robot’s or gripper’s degrees-of-freedom. Touchlab’s e-skin can withstand a high load, sense direction in 3D and can endure harsh environment such as acid, high and low temperatures, and radioactive environments conferring unique capabilities to the e-skin. 

No comments:

Post a Comment