Development of a One Time Deformable Microsystem with Integrated Sensor Network

Problem Definition:

Wearable and implantable electronics have drawn much attention since last decades. Very often wearable and implantable circuits require non-flat assemblies, because preferably the circuit must follow the irregular shapes of body parts, garments and etc. Conventional electronic circuits, which are fabricated and assembled from a rigid (or ultimately flexible) board, become difficult or problematic for use in these cases.

Objectives:

In the master thesis, the student will apply and optimize the stretchable technology in CMST and develop a one time deformable microsystem with integrated sensor network for a novel application. The student is free to define an application where the technology will be used, and will make a demonstrator out of it. The starting point is the existing technology developed at CMST. Fig. 1 illustrates an example of our technology. The principle behind is that an electronic circuit is divided into functional islands (containing the electronic components), which are interconnected by meander shaped, stretchable interconnects. During the thermoforming, the stretchable interconnect deforms and prevent the functional islands from being broken.


Fig. 1: a 2D flat circuit is thermoformed to a 3D circuit without losing its electrical functionalities

As a summary, the student will

-        Define and develop an application to demonstrate the stretchable technology

-        Design and implement a microsystem with integrated sensor network (from available sensors)

-        Apply and optimize the available technology for one time deformable microsystem

-        Design/implement a readout circuit interface of the sensor network

-        (Optionally) Software on PC for visualization of the sensor data


Keywords:

deformable electronics; sensor network; thermoforming; PCB design; microcontroller;

Location:

Ardoyen CMST