is an affordable, printable sensor technology that can be implemented on an industrial scale. It allows the large-scale and accurate measurement of temperature and pressure changes in objects and their environment.
The technology is based on sensors based on special, ferroelectric polymers, which are applied using a cost-effective screen printing method. These films can detect localized pressure and temperature changes with high precision.
We have named this technology PyzoFlex® because both the pyroelectric effect (e.g., for the creation of temperature-sensitive barriers or robotic hands) and the piezoelectric effect (e.g., for 3D-touch interfaces) are utilized. Any mechanical deformation caused by contact, pressure or movement can also be used to generate electrical energy (piezoelectric energy harvesting).
Wherever pressure / temperature changes, vibrations or shock waves occur, piezoelectric and pyroelectric generators can be used to convert mechanical deformation (changes in thickness) and temperature differences into electrical energy. Ferroelectric polymers belonging to the PVDF-Class (polyvinylidene fluoride) are used as a basic material due to the fact that they exhibit strong piezoelectric and pyroelectric activity after a poling procedure. These materials are also extremely stable, UV and weather resistant, flame-retardant and have a high chemical durability.
Area of Application
The range of applications for such large-scale, low-cost sensors, which can be integrated into any curved or textured surface, seems almost unlimited from today's perspective. PyzoFlex® sensors could be used in all areas of daily life and industry, whereby in particular
- Consumer Electronics (Human-Machine-Interfaces),
- Security (job safety, 360° motion detection, biometrics),
- User-oriented, efficient housing technologies,
- Robotics (artificial skin),
- Life sciences (large-scale, medical diagnostics) and
- Automotive industries (energy Harvesting, security)
are classified as interesting.
- Large-scale and flexible
- Depending on the design, can be spatially resolved
- High resistance to environmental conditions
- Self-powered detection
- Saves money during production by a using system based on industrial printing processes
The PyzoFlex® technology, due to the multi-functionality of the ferroelectric sensor material used, has extensive and complex applications ranging from sensor technology and energy production to component passivation. Some of the greatest challenges of the 21st century, including the need for energy efficiency, socially inclusive communication, daily safety and security and an aging population, can be directly addressed by such technologies. A particular, socially relevant concern is also the simple and intuitive operation of future communication interfaces. These are also important for people with special needs or the elderly, allowing barrier-free access to new and life enhancing technology.