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A Flexible Underwater Pressure Sensor Array Using a Conductive Elastomer Strain Gauge

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3 Author(s)
Frank M. Yaul ; Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology , Cambridge, MA, USA ; Vladimir Bulovic ; Jeffrey H. Lang

This paper presents a flexible pressure sensor array which is demonstrated to transduce underwater pressure variations produced by moving objects and surface waves. The sensors exhibit a 0.0014 fractional resistance change per 100 Pa, achieving a high 1.5-Pa pressure resolution. The measurement has a repeatability of 22% of the peak amplitude of the pressure waveform, due to creep. Additionally, sensor operation while bent to a 0.5-m radius of curvature is demonstrated. Each sensor consists of a strain-concentrating polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) diaphragm and a resistive strain gauge made of a conductive carbon-black-PDMS composite. A 1-D array of four sensors with a 15-mm center-to-center spacing is fabricated, and the dynamic response of the sensors is characterized and modeled.

Published in:

Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems  (Volume:21 ,  Issue: 4 )