Biological systems are mechanically soft, with complex, time-dependent 3D curvilinear shapes; modern electronic and microfluidic technologies are rigid, with simple, static 2D layouts. Eliminating this profound mismatch in physical properties will create vast opportunities in man-made systems that can intimately integrate with the human body, for diagnostic, therapeutic, or surgical function with important, unique capabilities in fitness/wellness, sports performance, and clinical healthcare. Over the last decade, a convergence of new concepts in materials science, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and advanced manufacturing has led to the emergence of diverse classes of 'biocompatible' electronic and microfluidic systems with skin-like physical properties. This talk describes the key ideas and presents some of the most recent device examples, including wireless, battery-free electronic 'tattoos' with applications in continuous monitoring of vital signs in neonatal and pediatric intensive care; and microfluidic/electronic platforms that can capture, manipulate and perform biomarker analysis on microliter volumes of sweat, with applications in sports and fitness.
Professor John A. Rogers obtained BA and BS degrees in chemistry and in physics from the University of Texas, Austin, in 1989. From MIT, he received SM degrees in physics and in chemistry in 1992 and a Ph.D. degree in physical chemistry in 1995. From 1995 to 1997, Rogers was a Junior Fellow in the Harvard University Society of Fellows. He joined Bell Laboratories as a Member of Technical Staff in the Condensed Matter Physics Research Department in 1997 and served as Director of this department from 2000 to 2002. He then spent thirteen years on the faculty at the University of Illinois, most recently as the Swanlund Chair Professor and Director of the Seitz Materials Research Laboratory. In the Fall of 2016, he joined Northwestern University as the Louis Simpson and Kimberly Querrey Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, Biomedical Engineering and Medicine, with affiliate appointments in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering and Chemistry, where he is also Director of the recently endowed Querrey Simpson Institute for Bioelectronics. He has published more than 750 papers, is a co-inventor on more than 100 patents and he has co-founded several successful technology companies. His research has been recognized by many awards, including a MacArthur Fellowship (2009), the Lemelson-MIT Prize (2011), and most recently the Benjamin Franklin Medal (2019). He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, the National Academy of Inventors, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.