Wireless, Battery-Free Epidermal Electronics for Continuous, Quantitative, Multimodal Thermal Characterization of Skin

Siddharth R. Krishnan, Chun Ju Su, Zhaoqian Xie, Manish Patel, Surabhi R. Madhvapathy, Yeshou Xu, Juliet Freudman, Barry Ng, Seung Yun Heo, Heling Wang, Tyler R. Ray, John Leshock, Izabela Stankiewicz, Xue Feng, Yonggang Huang, Philipp Gutruf, John A. Rogers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


Precise, quantitative measurements of the thermal properties of human skin can yield insights into thermoregulatory function, hydration, blood perfusion, wound healing, and other parameters of clinical interest. The need for wired power supply systems and data communication hardware limits, however, practical applicability of existing devices designed for measurements of this type. Here, a set of advanced materials, mechanics designs, integration schemes, and wireless circuits is reported as the basis for wireless, battery-free sensors that softly interface to the skin to enable precise measurements of its temperature and thermal transport properties. Calibration processes connect these parameters to the hydration state of the skin, the dynamics of near-surface flow through blood vessels and implanted catheters, and to recovery processes following trauma. Systematic engineering studies yield quantitative metrics in precision and reliability in real-world conditions. Evaluations on five human subjects demonstrate the capabilities in measurements of skin hydration and injury, including examples of continuous wear and monitoring over a period of 1 week, without disrupting natural daily activities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1803192
Issue number47
StatePublished - Nov 22 2018


  • NFC
  • epidermal electronics
  • hydration
  • thermal sensing
  • wireless electronics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Biotechnology
  • General Materials Science
  • Biomaterials


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