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E-tattoo Skinmarks – Newborn in smart-wearable family

Scientists have developed ultra-thin temporary electronic tattoos which can turn skin blemishes and wrinkles into touch-sensitive buttons for controlling your smartphone.Researchers, including those from Saarland University in Germany, used conductive ink to print wires and electrodes on temporary tattoo paper.

A team of scientists from Saarland University in Germany have developed temporary ultra-thin electronic tattoos that can turn the wrinkles and blemishes on your skin into touch-sensitive buttons. With these, you can control your smartphone. They have used conductive ink to print electrodes and wires on temporary tattoo paper.

The tattoos, called SkinMarks, are thinner than the width of a human hair. The SkinMarks are transferred on your skin using water. These tattoos can last a couple of days and can be rubbed off. Martin Weigel, Saarland University, states that people know the location of their birthmarks and bumps. These can be ideal locations for the touch-sensitive buttons.

The researchers have stated that the volume of the smartphone can be tweaked by sliding one finger across a tattoo that is placed along another finger. On bending the tattooed finger, the volume rocker will turn into the play/pause button. The tattoos placed on the knuckles can double as four distinct buttons when a fist is made using the tattooed hand. When the fingers are extended, the same can function as a long slider.

Juergen Steimle of the university states that they have made use of the skin’s elastic properties such as stretching and bending to achieve this. The tattoos are responsive to the changes on the skin surface. This way, the tattoos can be incorporate with multiple commands at the same location.

In quotes:

People intuitively know the location of their own bumps and birthmarks, which makes them ideal locations for touch-sensitive buttons“, said Martin Weigel of Saarland University.

You could adjust your smartphone volume by sliding one finger across a tattoo placed along the side of another finger. Bend the tattooed finger, and the volume slider could become a play and pause button“, researchers said.

Similarly, tattoos on the knuckles could act as four distinct buttons when the hand is making a fist, but then function as one long slider when the fingers are extended.”We make use of the elastic properties of the skin, including bending and stretching“, said Juergen Steimle of Saarland University. “By having the tattoos responsive to changes in the skin surface, they incorporate multiple commands at one location“, he added.

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