Sweat analyzing sensor patch flies high at USAF Research Lab

click to enlargeCall them ‘sticky sensors’, biosensor tattoos or as you like, but there’s been a lot of research happening in the past three years around gathering biometrics from skin contact. Whether it’s the John Rogers ‘skunk works’ at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign measuring ECG, EEG and cardiovascular conditions; University of California-San Diego’s lactate and blood glucose monitoring; MC10’s Biostamp for infant temperature, head impacts and neurological disorders plus NewDealDesign‘s multi-purpose implants, skin is in. Though the Apple Watch was flummoxed (for now) by biometrics due to hairy arms and sweat [TTA 18 Feb], these sensors thrive on the latter. The US Air Force (USAF) Research Laboratory has been working on sweat analytic sensors for some time now [TTA 24 Apr 14]. Their STRONG research team out of the 711th Human Performance Wing including the aforementioned Dr Joshua Hagen, in collaboration with University of Cincinnati’s Novel Devices Laboratory, conducted the first successful human trials of a usable sweat sensor prototype, in an exercise lab at Wright-Patterson AFB. The sensors are Band-Aid sized (above), and track biomarkers such as electrolytes, metabolites, amino acids and proteins to monitor hydration, heat stress and physical exhaustion. All of which have applicability to the training and safety of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen–but when commercialized, the entire fitness market, drug testing, clinical drug trials, and older adults’ health and safety where temperature, hydration and feeding can go awry in short order.  Breaking a sweat with the new Air Force biosensor (Armed With Science)

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