Electronic Stickers change the way we use everyday objects

A new functioning electronic sticker technology has been discovered at Purdue University by Dr. Chi Hwan Lee and his team.

Posted: Aug. 10, 2018 12:28 AM
Updated: Aug. 10, 2018 10:24 AM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — A new functioning electronic sticker technology has been discovered at Purdue University by Dr. Chi Hwan Lee and his team.

These stickers make any object functional.

Using their patented bonding technique allows for the stickers to be placed anywhere more efficiently.

It was an idea that started five years ago and is now a reality for Dr. Lee.

"It’s just like a sticker such that you can attach this onto anywhere you want to make the surface smart or functional,” said Lee.

The stickers can attach to everyday objects such as windows, cabinets and mirrors.

Their purpose is to measure environmental factors.

Factors like temperature, humidity and dangerous gasses, but they have one weakness.

Previous versions of the idea have been difficult to remove and not reusable.

Lee, the assistant professor of biomedical engineering, is applying some of the same principles behind peeling paint to change that.

"In our case, we use just water at room temperature and the mechanical peeling process,” said Lee. “So this process is very simple and environmentally friendly process and after you physically separate the functional layers, the bottom silicon wafer is very clean, such that you can reuse for another fabrication process."

Lee says a reusable, removable sticker could bring the technology into entirely new fields - like health.

"We have developed wearable skin patches, sensor patch for rehabilitation management," said Lee.

Eventually, those patches will be able to detect heart rate, breathing and muscle movement.

Lee said these stickers will work differently.

The electronic stickers are bonded using heat for a couple minutes, but the biomedical stickers cannot use heat because they are placed directly on the skin. The good news is the electronic stickers are almost on the market.

"We have a U.S. patent on this technology and my aim is to license this technology," said Lee.

A couple companies have reached out to Dr. Lee to try and buy the technology.

He said he still has some improvements to make.

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