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Extremely Stretchable and Electrically Conductive Hydrogels with Dually Synergistic Network for Wearable Strain Sensors

Abstract

Flexible strain sensors are highly repuired in soft robotics, human-machine interfaces and health monitoring devices. However, it is still a big challenge to construct strain sensors with excellent mechanical properties and broad sensing range. In this study, a kind of extremely stretchable and electrically conductive hydrogels with dually synergistic networks are fabricated for wearable resistive-type strain sensors. Dually synergistic networks are composed of soft poly(acrylic acid) (PAA) network and rigid conductive polyaniline (PANI) network. PAA network is crosslinked by amphiphilic block copolymers, PANI network is chemically doped and ionically crosslinked by phytic acid and these two networks are further interlocked by physical entanglements, hydrogen bonds and ionic interactions. The resulting hydrogels have high tensile strength, controllable conductivity and large tensile deformation (1160%). Moreover, the hydrogels are utilized for fabricating strain sensors with good sensitivity and wide sensing range (0~1130%). The high performances of hydrogels make such strain sensors suitable for wearable devices monitoring both subtle and large strains induced by human motions, including moving of two hands, bending of joints, conducting of gestures and swallowing.

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Publication details

The article was received on 23 May 2018, accepted on 30 Jul 2018 and first published on 08 Aug 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TC02505C
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. C, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Extremely Stretchable and Electrically Conductive Hydrogels with Dually Synergistic Network for Wearable Strain Sensors

    Z. Wang, H. Zhou, J. Lai, B. Yan, H. Liu, X. Jin, A. Ma, G. Zhang, W. Zhao and W. Chen, J. Mater. Chem. C, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8TC02505C

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