Smart Socks for Diabetic Patients
Scientists developed a new device for monitoring the health of diabetic patients, according to a new study published in November 2017.
They used dielectric elastomer sensors (DES) and weaved them into textiles as a wearable device to monitor diabetic patients.
DES comprises an elastomer film coated with highly flexible electrodes on both sides. A film of elements can be formed by patterning the electrodes Silicone rubber, through chemical cross-linking offers a broad variability of hardness.
Wearable textiles have the potential to help patients ease out bedsores and easily localize pressure distribution in shoes. It also could be used in posture training, or as an input device for games and controlling fitness.
The device was found adept to protect diabetic patients against wounding via an integrated sensor system. The system sends a warning signal when pressure in the shoe is locally high.
The sock has forty dielectric elastomer sensors to measure compression load and distribution in the stocking. These are attached to the sole, heel, top, and ankle of the stocking, so as to acquire a three-dimensional reading.
When a patient stands for an extended period of time, the sensor alerts him or her to balance their pressure. This is done by identifying pressure and transmitting measurement signals via a conductive thread to a wireless electronic unit. It also has a chip called application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) to help gather information from 40 capacitive sensors and further transmitting the data to a smartphone, wirelessly.
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