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Sensors 2013, 13(11), 14777-14796; doi:10.3390/s131114777

P(VDF-TrFE) Polymer-Based Thin Films Deposited on Stainless Steel Substrates Treated Using Water Dissociation for Flexible Tactile Sensor Development

1
Department of Engineering Science and Ocean Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
2
Department of Electrical Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
3
Graduate Institute of Electronics Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
4
Graduate Institute of Biomedical Electronics and Bioinformatics, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 August 2013 / Revised: 11 October 2013 / Accepted: 23 October 2013 / Published: 30 October 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tactile Sensors and Sensing Systems)

Abstract

In this work, deionized (DI) water dissociation was used to treat and change the contact angle of the surface of stainless steel substrates followed by the spin coating of P(VDF-TrFE) material for the fabrication of tactile sensors. The contact angle of the stainless steel surface decreased 14° at −30 V treatment; thus, the adhesion strength between the P(VDF-TrFE) thin film and the stainless steel substrate increased by 90%. Although the adhesion strength was increased at negative voltage treatment, it is observed that the crystallinity value of the P(VDF-TrFE) thin film declined to 37% at −60 V. In addition, the remanent polarization value of the P(VDF-TrFE) thin film declined from 5.6 mC/cm2 to 4.61 mC/cm2 for treatment voltages between −5 V and −60 V. A maximum value of approximately 1000 KV/cm of the coercive field value was obtained with the treatment at −15 V. The d33 value was approximately −10.7 pC/N for the substrate treated at 0 V and reached a minimum of −5 pC/N for treatment at −60 V. By using the P(VDF-TrFE) thin-film as the sensing material for tactile sensors, human pulse measurements were obtained from areas including the carotid, brachial, ankle, radial artery, and apical regions. In addition, the tactile sensor is suitable for monitoring the Cun, Guan, and Chi acupoints located at the radial artery region in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Waveform measurements of the Cun, Guan, and Chi acupoints are crucial because, in TCM, the various waveforms provided information regarding the health conditions of organs.
Keywords: biomedicine; P(VDF-TrFE); tactile sensor; Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) biomedicine; P(VDF-TrFE); tactile sensor; Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Tseng, H.-J.; Tian, W.-C.; Wu, W.-J. P(VDF-TrFE) Polymer-Based Thin Films Deposited on Stainless Steel Substrates Treated Using Water Dissociation for Flexible Tactile Sensor Development. Sensors 2013, 13, 14777-14796.

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