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Wearable & Implantable electronics The complete solution was achieved with the least amount of external components. The resulting extreme integration results in a cost-effective solution providing enhanced manufacturability. The finished product has an appearance and feel not dissimilar to other standard dermal patches. To ensure maximum patient comfort, the total thickness of the patch is restricted by the battery dimension alone and is less than 2mm. Pharmaceutical applications The use of the patch is made as simple as possible. Just apply the self-adhesive patch to the skin ‘Stick and Play’. There is no user interaction required beyond the application of the patch, no need to remember to charge the battery, no switching on Conceptual illustration of the MemoPatch® medical therapy adherence technology (c) istock.com/jvh5. or a need to program the patch. Once it is in place, the patch is ready to do its job, operation starts automatically when applied to the skin thanks to an innovative proximity detection system. MemoPatch can be fully preprogrammed during production with the right medication intake schedule uploaded to it. With this product, TheraSolve is positioning itself as a genuine medication adherence innovator and could play a key role in enhancing medical outcomes in the areas of Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, HIV, hepatitis C, oncology, post-transplantation and many others. The technology at the heart of this unique medical wearable has been developed with the financial support of the Flemish Institute of Science and Technology (IWT). MemoPatch is now beyond the prototyping phase and is currently being validated in several scientific studies. TheraSolve has already secured the interest of several international pharmaceutical companies for innovative applications of the patch Concurrently, volume production processes are being fine-tuned to allow for high-yield, large volume manufacturing of the device. The company is now investigating additional applications for its patch technology that will emerge through synergies with other technologies in future including those lying at the convergence between wireless and internet of things functionalities. Hybrid supercapacitor trumps thin-film lithium battery RBy Paul Buckley esearchers at UCLA’s California NanoSystems Institute have combined two nanomaterials to create a hybrid supercapacitor that combines the best qualities of batteries and supercapacitors by storing large amounts of energy, recharges quickly and can withstand more than 10,000 recharge cycles. Supercapacitors are electrochemical components that can charge in seconds rather than hours and can be used for 1 million recharge cycles. Unlike batteries, however, they do not store enough power to run our computers and smartphones. The UCLA hybrid supercapacitor stores large amounts of energy, recharges quickly and can last for more than 10,000 recharge cycles. The CNSI scientists also created a microsupercapacitor that is small enough to fit in wearable or implantable devices and is one-fifth the thickness of a sheet of paper. The device is capable of holding more than twice as much charge as a typical thin-film lithium battery. The study, led by Richard Kaner, distinguished professor of chemistry and biochemistry and materials science and engineering, and Maher El-Kady, a postdoctoral scholar, was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. “The microsupercapacitor is a new evolving configuration, a very small rechargeable power source with a much higher capacity than previous lithium thin-film microbatteries,” said El-Kady. The new components combine laser-scribed graphene, or LSG - a material that can hold an electrical charge, is highly conductive, and charges and recharges quickly - with manganese dioxide, which is currently used in alkaline batteries because it holds a lot of charge and is cheap and plentiful. The devices can be fabricated without the need for extreme temperatures or the expensive ‘dry rooms’ required to produce today’s supercapacitors. “Let’s say you wanted to put a small amount of electrical current into an adhesive bandage for drug release or healing assistance technology,” said Kaner. “The microsupercapacitor is so thin you could put it inside the bandage to supply the current. You could also recharge it quickly and use it for a very long time.” The researchers found that the supercapacitor could quickly store electrical charge generated by a solar cell during the day, hold the charge until evening and then power an LED overnight, showing promise for off-grid street lighting. “The LSG–manganese-dioxide capacitors can store as much electrical charge as a lead acid battery, yet can be recharged in seconds, and they store about six times the capacity of stateof the-art commercially available supercapacitors,” explained Kaner. “This scalable approach for fabricating compact, reliable, energy-dense supercapacitors shows a great deal of promise in real-world applications, and we’re very excited about the possibilities for greatly improving personal electronics technology in the near future.” 30 Electronic Engineering Times Europe April 2015 www.electronics-eetimes.com


EETE APR 2015
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