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This paper describes an indentometer device used to identify the linear dynamic and nonlinear properties of skin and underlying tissue using an in vivo test. The device uses a Lorentz force actuator to apply a dynamic force to the skin and measures the resulting displacement. It was found that the skin could be modeled as a Wiener system (i.e. a linear dynamic system followed by a static nonlinearity). Using a stochastic nonlinear system identification technique, the method presented in this paper was able to identify the dynamic linear and static nonlinear mechanical parameters of the indentometer-skin system within 2 to 4 seconds. The shape of the nonlinearity was found to vary depending on the area of the skin that was tested. We show that the device can repeatably distinguish between different areas of human tissue for multiple test subjects.
Date of Conference: 3-6 Sept. 2009