To prove their concept, the researchers designed several prototype arrays with up to 240 artificial mechanoreceptors, always maintaining a latency of 1ms while delivering a temporal signal precision under 60ns. They then designed a set of biomimetic models using the ACES platform to mimic the fast-adapting (FA), slow-adapting (SA), and temperature receptors of human skin by integrating flexible tactile and temperature transducers communicating through ACES pulse signatures. Because all three types of transducers were combined onto a single sheet of flexible conductor, the ACES platform could simultaneously detect thermal and tactile sensations when fitted onto a prosthetic hand.
The researchers have secured patents and are aiming to commercialize their electronic skin technologies. They are working on the design of an ASIC that would perform all of the ACES receptor functions in an optimized footprint, with programmable pulse signatures.
National University of Singapore - https://nus.edu.sg/