e-Nanoflex sensor system: Smartphone-based roaming health monitor

Vijay K. Varadan, Prashanth S. Kumar, Sechang Oh, Hyeokjun Kwon, Pratyush Rai, Nilanjan Banerjee, Robert E. Harbaugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The growing need and market demand for point of care (POC) systems to improve patient’s quality of life are driving the development of wireless nanotechnology based smart systems for diagnosis and treatment of various chronic and life threatening diseases. POC diagnostics for neurological, metabolic, and cardiovascular disorders require constant long term untethered monitoring of individuals. Given the uncertainty associated with location and time at which immediate diagnosis and treatment may be required, constant vigilance and monitoring are the only practical solutions. What is needed is for a remote cyber-enabled health care smart system incorporating novel ideas from nanotechnology, low power embedded systems, wireless networking, and cloud computing to fundamentally advance. To meet this goal, we present e-Nanoflex platform, which is capable of monitoring patient health wherever they may be and communicating the data in real time to a physician or a hospital. Unlike state-of-the-art systems that are either local sensor systems or rely on custom relaying devices, e-Nanoflex is a highly nonintrusive and inexpensive end-to-end cyber-physical system. Using nanostructured sensors, e-Nanoflex provides nearly invisible monitoring of physiological conditions. It relies on smartphones to filter, compress, and relay geo-tagged data. Further, it ties to a backend cloud infrastructure for data storage, data dissemination, and abnormality detection using machine learning techniques. e-Nanoflex is a complete end-to-end system for physiological sensing and geo-tagged data dissemination to hospitals and caregivers. It is intended as a basic platform that can support any nanostructure based flexible sensor to monitor a variety of conditions such as body temperature, respiration air flow, oxygen consumption, bioelectric signals, pulse oximetry, muscle activity, and neural activity. Additionally, to address the cost of manufacturing sensors, e-Nanoflex uses a low cost production technique based on roll to roll gravure printing. We show the efficacy of our platform through a case study that involves acquiring electrocardiogram signals using gold nano-electrodes fabricated on a flexible substrate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Nanotechnology in Engineering and Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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