LG Innotek Develops Flexible Textile Pressure Sensors

LG Innotek Develops Flexible Textile Pressure Sensors

LG's subsidiary LG Innotek has established a textile pressure sensor that is flexible, and could find its custom in industries like healthcare and developed according to the company. The company is yet to commercialize the technology but believed that the sensor is superior to the present inflexible and stiff pressure sensors.

A pressure sensor is used to sense pressure and measure pressure changes, but remaining coin-shaped pressure sensors have limitations in detecting pressure consistently across a wide surface. According to LG Innotek on Wednesday, its textile-type flexible pressure sensor, though, is possible to cut, roll, and patch the pressure sensor textile together like fabrics and can sense pressure evenly on a large surface. 

The textile-based flexible pressure sensor is 1 millimeter thick with a surface area of 1 square meters. It undergone over 240 hours in exciting temperatures ranging from 40 degrees below zero to 80 degrees Celsius and go on even after a person weighing 70 kilograms sit on it 100,000 times during the test, the company said. 

The sensors can be used to create pressure-sensitive shoes or carpets to identify a patient's movement or to make pressure-sensitive golf club to progress a golfer's grip.

They can be used in cars to sense driver's posture, weight, body type, and automatically changing the seat or pressure of an airbag.

The company has not given a timeline for the accessibility of the sensors for commercial use but the sensors are not likely to be seen in any products for a couple of years.

The new pressure sensor textile is expected to be used in several areas, in particular, medical and auto sectors. Medical devices fixed with the pressure sensor will make it likely to check a patient’s physical condition easily and remotely by monitoring behavioral patterns and balance system. 

LG Innotek applied for 13 patents connected to the newly developed product and supposes to commercialize it within this year. 

Changhwan Kim, Head of the LG Innotek’s R&D Center said, "We tried to break away from the previous method and attempt new methods to develop innovative products." He also said, “We will continue to develop materials and components in various fields to provide new experiences to our customers."

According to market research agency BBC Research & Consulting, the global pressure sensor market is likely to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.2 percent to $16.3 billion in 2019 from $11.5 billion in 2014.

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