Bio-Inspired Stretchable Absolute Pressure Sensor Network.Sensors (Basel) 2016; 16(1)S
A bio-inspired absolute pressure sensor network has been developed. Absolute pressure sensors, distributed on multiple silicon islands, are connected as a network by stretchable polyimide wires. This sensor network, made on a 4'' wafer, has 77 nodes and can be mounted on various curved surfaces to cover an area up to 0.64 m × 0.64 m, which is 100 times larger than its original size. Due to Micro Electro-Mechanical system (MEMS) surface micromachining technology, ultrathin sensing nodes can be realized with thicknesses of less than 100 µm. Additionally, good linearity and high sensitivity (~14 mV/V/bar) have been achieved. Since the MEMS sensor process has also been well integrated with a flexible polymer substrate process, the entire sensor network can be fabricated in a time-efficient and cost-effective manner. Moreover, an accurate pressure contour can be obtained from the sensor network. Therefore, this absolute pressure sensor network holds significant promise for smart vehicle applications, especially for unmanned aerial vehicles.