Development of highly sensitive pressure sensor using 3D printed gyroid models

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Chris Vattathichirayil


The gyroid design is an infinitely connected bi-continuous triply periodic minimal surface. This structure can be found in nature such as butterfly wings and lipids. It’s a continuously curved surface that repeats sinusoidally in 3D dimensions. Due to the desirable mechanical properties of the Gyroid and the complex geometry of its lattice, research about its fabrication 3D printing has been of high interest in recent years. When fabricating a gyroid by 3D printing of flexible materials, the properties of flexibility, durability and uniform compressibility can be tuned for the sensor requirements. 3D printing of gyroid lattice structures with different parameters yields different compressibility behaviors. By extruding conductive traces on the surface of a gyroid lattice structure, it is possible to fabricate highly sensitive pressure sensors. By placing conductive traces on either side of a gyroid lattice and using electromagnetic sensing, we are able to find the correlation between the level of compression of the gyroid structure and the sensor output. This is useful mechanism for pressure sensing applications such as gait analysis or robot arm gripper clamping.

Faculty Supervisor:
Dr. Woo Soo Kim, School of Mechatronic Systems Engineering, Simon Fraser University

Research Team Members:
Taeil Kim and Hnat Cheung, Simon Fraser University

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Designing the Future: Emerging Technologies and Innovation