LEDs Under the Skin – Burningman will go subdermal
It was reported there were around 51,454 at this year’s Metropolis themed Burning Man. And I think 51,453 of them had some form of LED lighting.
If what the Scientific American reported today comes true, I can guarantee Burners will be some of the first to dawn subdermal implant LEDs.
In an environment where darkness envelops you, LED is not only a necessity it’s a fashion statement.
Excerpt from the full article in the Scientific American, not a proud PETA moment — poor mouse euthanized for fashion…errr I mean science:
As a demonstration of the technology the researchers put LED arrays through any number of experimental implementations. They deposited LEDs on aluminum foil, the leaf of a tree, and a sheet of paper; they wrapped arrays around nylon thread and tied it in a knot; and they distended LED arrays by inflating the polymer substrate or stretching it over the tip of a pencil or the head of a cotton swab. “Eventually the students just got tired” of devising new tests for the light-emitting sheets, Rogers says. “There was nothing that we tried that we couldn’t do.”
The researchers also integrated light sensors alongside the LEDs and embedded the assembly in the fingertip of a vinyl glove. As the glove drew closer to a surface, the light sensors registered progressively more reflected light from the LEDs, producing a sort of proximity sensor that could be used to guide a surgeon’s hand during a procedure or to form an artificial sensory system for robots.
But ultimately the use of LED arrays may be most attractive for implantable biomedical devices. “You can build systems that very naturally integrate with the tissues of the human body, because these systems are flexible and soft,” Rogers says. Optical, spectroscopic measurements of tissue could alert physicians to the presence and location of infections after a surgical procedure. “Photoactivated drug delivery is another area that we think LEDs could be useful,” he adds. As a demonstration, the researchers built light-emitting sutures and an implantable sheet of LEDs that they tested in vivo with an anesthetized laboratory mouse. (The mouse was later euthanized.)