Smart diaper sensor
2M is developing a smart diaper sensor monitoring platform that can be used for a variety of applications. Initial focus is on the following vital signs:
- Heart rate
- Breathing rate
- Body position and movement
Applications and markets
The smart diaper sensor technology can be used for a number of applications. Current focus is on providing solutions for neonates and babies. The technology platform can be used for other applications and markets like:
- Diapers for neonates and babies
- Diapers for adults
- Blankets or disposable sheets
Initial focus – urination of neonates
The survival rate of premature babies is largely determined by the development of their organs. Monitoring the fluid balance is an important indicator to assess the physiological condition of the child and the functioning of the kidneys. Currently, the moment of urination is determined rather imprecisely by frequent opening and checking of the nappy. The amount of urine is determined by manually weighing a wet nappy. In this way, the healthcare professional performs many actions, the observations are rather imprecise and the child’s development is disturbed. The smart nappy offers a solution for this.
The result of the project ‘Smart diaper for neonates’ is the development of a fully disposable nappy with built-in electronic sensors that can be used to continuously and wirelessly monitor of urine discharges of premature babies. Data will be made available via a ‘smart’ device (e.g. smartphone).
The purpose of using the diaper is to significantly improve care for premature neonates and reduce the burden on healthcare professionals. At the same time, improved and accurate data will provide doctors with an instrument with which (predictive) relationships between various physiological processes in neonates.
Tech innovation of the smart diaper
The electronics are made with advanced printing techniques and are an integral part of the diaper. The use of ‘printed electronics’ enables high-volume production of cheap electrical structures. In addition to functional and technical aspects, environmental aspects will of course also be taken into account in the development.
The second innovation is that the nappy will be able to measure the amount of urine to an accuracy of ½ ml. In order to be able to measure this, a new diaper structure has to be developed.