Transparent gaming controller that acts like a second skin
Scientists at Seoul National University, South Korea, have created a stretchy, skin-like controller, which promises to turn a forearm into a touchpad for gaming, playing music and scrawling notes that appear on a computer screen. The team, led by researcher Chong-Chan Kim, along with Jeong-Yun Sun, a professor of materials science and engineering, imagines a future where we ditch brittle electrodes for soft, biocompatible technology.
The team developed the panel using a hydrogel made from polyacrylamide, which is a water-soluble acrylic resin, and lithium chloride salts that act like a conductor. Electrodes on both ends of the panel create a uniform electrostatic field. Pressing on it closes the circuit, allowing the current to flow to the touch point. Current meters at each corner pick up the signals and transmit these to a separate controller board that connects to a computer.