Design, fabrication and experimental validation of a novel dry-contact sensor for measuring electroencephalography signals without skin preparation

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Sensors, 2011, 11 (6), pp. 5819 - 5834
Issue Date:
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In the present study, novel dry-contact sensors for measuring electro-encephalography (EEG) signals without any skin preparation are designed, fabricated by an injection molding manufacturing process and experimentally validated. Conventional wet electrodes are commonly used to measure EEG signals; they provide excellent EEG signals subject to proper skin preparation and conductive gel application. However, a series of skin preparation procedures for applying the wet electrodes is always required and usually creates trouble for users. To overcome these drawbacks, novel dry-contact EEG sensors were proposed for potential operation in the presence or absence of hair and without any skin preparation or conductive gel usage. The dry EEG sensors were designed to contact the scalp surface with 17 spring contact probes. Each probe was designed to include a probe head, plunger, spring, and barrel. The 17 probes were inserted into a flexible substrate using a one-time forming process via an established injection molding procedure. With these 17 spring contact probes, the flexible substrate allows for high geometric conformity between the sensor and the irregular scalp surface to maintain low skin-sensor interface impedance. Additionally, the flexible substrate also initiates a sensor buffer effect, eliminating pain when force is applied. The proposed dry EEG sensor was reliable in measuring EEG signals without any skin preparation or conductive gel usage, as compared with the conventional wet electrodes. © 2011 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
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