Let them see you sweat

Weightlifter working up a sweatPhoto courtesy UC MercedBerkeley engineers are going to make you sweat — and it’s all in the name of science. Researchers have devised a flexible sensor system that can measure metabolites and electrolytes in sweat, calibrate the data based upon skin temperature and then sync the results in real time to a smartphone. While health monitors have exploded onto the consumer electronics scene over the past decade, researchers say this device is the first fully integrated electronic system that can provide continuous, non-invasive monitoring of multiple biochemicals in sweat. The prototype, developed by electrical engineering and computer sciences professor Ali Javey and his team, including postdoctoral fellows Wei Gao and Sam Emaminejad and Ph.D. student Hnin Y.Y. Nyein, packs five sensors onto a flexible circuit board. The sensors measure the metabolites glucose and lactate and the electrolytes sodium and potassium, along with skin temperature. This advance opens doors to wearable devices that alert users to health problems such as fatigue, dehydration and dangerously high body temperatures.

Read more: What new wearable sensors can reveal from perspiration (with video)

Topics: EECS, Devices & inventions, Health

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