Baltimore Colloquium on Flexible and Wearable Electronics


The Baltimore Chapter of Electron Devices and Solid-State Circuits will be hosting its sixth Fall Colloquium on October 12, 2017.  The theme of this year's meeting is Flexible and Wearable Electronics.  This one-day event features a panel of Distinguished Lecturers from IEEE EDS and local experts in the field.  Attendance is open to industry, government, and academia, including students.  The venue once again is the American Center for Physics (conference room A), one mile southeast of the University of Maryland College Park campus.  For location and directions see

Admission and parking are free, but registration is required (see below).  Complimentary lunch will be provided for those who register by October 9.  Attendance is limited to 50; if you are not able to register online, please contact the chapter secretary

Co-sponsored by Washington DC / NoVa EMBS.


09:00  Registration and Coffee
09:45  Opening Remarks
10:00  Dr. Paul Berger, OSU, "Fullly Printable & Autonomously Powered Nodes for IoE"
10:45  Dr. Deji Akinwande, UT Austin, "Flexible & Wearable Atomic Sheets: Plastics to Paper to Skin"
11:30  Dr. Eric Forsythe, ARL, "NextFlex: Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing Ecosystem for DOD"
12:00  Lunch
01:00  Dr. Kaustav Banerjee, UC Santa Barbara, "2D Materials for Smart Life"
01:45  Dr. Aristos Christou, UM College Park, "Nanotechnology of Graphene Interconnects on Flexible Substrates"
02:15  Dr. Nilanjan Banerjee, UMBC, "Gesture Recognition using Textile Capacitive Sensors and Micro-Radars"
02:45  Coffee Break
03:00  Dr. Randy Mrozek, ARL, "Enabling Materials for Stretchable Electronics in Army Applications"
03:30  Dr. Nathan Lazarus, ARL, "Creating a Stretchable Power System"
04:00  Closing Remarks

Morning Abstracts:

Dr. Paul Berger: It has been predicted that by 2021, there will be 200 billion connected devices which should all operate and integrate smoothly with the Internet but also provide a vast spectrum of services in healthcare, smart homes, industry automation, and environmental monitoring.  As the "Internet of Things" (IoT) or "Internet of Everything" (IoE) continues to grow, the number of connected objects will grow at explosive rates.  For this to be possible, a paradigm shift from current approaches based on rigid silicon CMOS where batteries are used will be required.  In the future, IoT objects will have to be extremely low cost, flexible and thin (and in some cases also stretchable) in order for this ubiquitous electronics to be unobtrusive.  In addition, these distributed devices must harvest their energy from other means than batteries, as massive numbers of batteries mean massive end of life, toxic waste disposal, and recycling issues.  Advances in energy harvesting and storage will improve the ability to harvest energy from a variety of sources such as light, radio waves, and motion and store it in printed supercapacitors that are non-toxic and unproblematic at end of life.  The exploitation of tunneling devices and novel devices combining Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) and printing will make possible a new generation of low-power and high-speed circuits for power management, data storage, computation, and wireless communication.  As a result, it will open the path to a true Internet of Things that will cost very little, be placeable anywhere, and deserve the description "environmentally friendly". These objects will be energy autonomous, battery-free, be able to sense, process, and analyze environmental, body and other information, and transfer it by acceptable wireless protocols to networks of the user’s choice.  Because they will be manufactured by low-temperature, low-cost mass manufacturing processes, they will be ultra-low cost and able to be put on thin, flexible carriers that make them able to be truly put anywhere.

Dr. Deji Akinwande: This talk will present progress in flexible electronics based on 2D materials including graphene, mos2 and black phosphorus.  Performance achievements from baseband to 100 GHz have been obtained by quasi-optimized device structures on plastics.  Circuits and nanosystems have been demonstrated.  In addition, results on paper will also be presented with GHz performance on commercial paper substrates.  Furthermore, our new research direction on electronic tattoos featuring graphene will be highlighted as a wearable platform sensor for mobile health monitoring and human machine control technologies.  Commercialization of graphene technologies will be brought to light with the latest achievements.

Dr. Eric Forsythe: NextFlex is the fifth DOD Institute with the Vision to address the Flexible Hybrid Electronics (FHE) manufacturing challenges through a public-private partnership that will enable a US FHE industrial base and trained workforce. FHE manufacturing is the integration of highly tailorable devices on flexible, stretchable substrates that combine thinned CMOS components with components that are added via “printing” processes. This technology is identified as flexible-hybrid because it integrates flexible components such as circuits, communications, sensors, and power with more sophisticated silicon based processors. The manufacturing process will be demonstrated in pre-commercial demonstration articles to highlight the FHE capabilities for our warfighters; wearable devices, ubiquitous sensing (internet of things), and medical devices.

  Date and Time




  • One Physics Ellipse
  • College Park, Maryland
  • United States 20740
  • Building: American Center for Physics
  • Room Number: Conference Room A
  • Click here for Map

Staticmap?size=250x200&sensor=false&zoom=14&markers=38.9715303%2c 76
  • Conference Chairs:

    Dr. Paul Potyraj,

    Dr. Richard Fu,

    Dr. Pankaj Shah,

  • Co-sponsored by Washington DC / NoVa EMBS (
  • Registration closed


Afternoon Abstracts:

Dr. Kaustav Banerjee: This talk will highlight the prospects of 2D materials for innovating energy-efficient transistors, sensors, and interconnects targeted for next-generation electronics needed to support the emerging paradigm of the Internet of Everything. More specifically, it will bring forward applications uniquely enabled by 2D materials and their heterostructures that have been demonstrated at UCSB for realizing ultra-energy-efficient electronics. This will include the world’s first 2D-material channel band-to-band tunneling transistor that overcomes a fundamental power consumption challenge in all electronic devices since the invention of the first transistor in 1947, as well as a breakthrough interconnect technology based on doped-graphene-nanoribbons, which overcomes the fundamental limitations of conventional metals and provides an attractive pathway toward a low-power and highly reliable interconnect technology for next-generation integrated circuits. We will also bring forward a new class of ultra-sensitive and low-power sensors as well as area-efficient and high-performance passive devices, both enabled by 2D materials, for ubiquitous sensing and connectivity to usher unprecedented improvements in quality of life.

Dr. Aristos Christou: Flexible electronics have numerous applications including flexible displays, sensors for aircraft and cars, solar cells and biomedical sensors. Flexible displays are a subset of flexible electronics and consist of layer stack structure including a polymer substrate, thin film transistor (TFT) layer, a common electrode and finally an encapsulation layer. One of the major limitations for flexible displays are “lineout” defects. Lineouts are vertical/horizontal lines of red, green, blue, black or white observed during display operation.  One of the main mechanisms that causes lineouts is gate line impedance buildup due to crack initiation/propagation in the interconnect material. The state of the art material for these interconnect layers is Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) because of its combination of electrical and optical properties.  However, ITO is a brittle ionic material, forming micro-cracks during bending. Graphene’s properties make it an ideal candidate to replace ITO as the interconnect material. Graphene’s mobility ranges from 15,000 up to 200,000 cm2/V·s. Graphene also has a high optical transmittance with a value of 97.6% for a monolayer of graphene in comparison to ITO’s optical transmittance of 85%. Graphene has an Elastic modulus of ≈ 1 TPa and an ultimate tensile strength of 120 GPa.  Bending stress studies on graphene have also shown that graphene can sustain more strain than ITO before reaching 10% change in resistance.  However, there has been no reported results on the effect of cyclical deformation on both the electrical and optical properties of graphene.  This information is critical for graphene on flexible substrates where numerous bending cycles will occur during the life of the product.

Dr. Nilanjan Banerjee: Technological miniaturization and low-power systems have precipitated an explosive growth in capability and adoption of wearable sensors.  These sensors can be applied to many medical and rehabilitative applications, including as an assistive interface. The overarching theme of this talk is the use of fabric capacitor sensor arrays and an array of micro-doppler radars as a holistic, wearable, touchless sensing solution for gesture recognition. These sensors are lightweight, and can therefore be integrated into items of everyday use. Additionally, gesture-recognition is expanded in this talk to touchless capacitor sensor arrays through the ideation, development, and evaluation of an adaptive signal processing algorithm. The algorithm comprises a hierarchy of data reduction techniques that enable real-time processing on a low-power embedded microcontroller. Using a set of adaptive techniques, the system allows for recognition of gestures of different sizes and rotations as well as gestures with noisy or jittery motions. The system is applied to gesture recognition for individuals with mobility impairments.

Dr. Randy Mrozek: Stretchable electronic devices that are capable of undergoing large, complex deformations (>20 % strain) while providing a controlled performance have potential utility in a wide range of Army applications including robotics, communications, and conformal energy storage. Polymeric materials are an obvious candidate for these applications because they can exhibit high elongations at break and complete elastic recovery however, polymers are typically electrically insulating. Methods for achieving conductivity including using inherently conductive polymers, incorporating conductive particulate fillers, and strain-tolerant geometric features typically reduce the performance of the host material and present significant manufacturing challenges.  In addition, materials for Army applications must exhibit consistent performance from -50 to 75 ºC, suitable toughness and durability for multi-year lifetimes, and be manufacturable in large volumes at relatively low cost.  This talk will discuss the critical challenges for producing materials with controlled electrical performance during deformation and will summarize our progress in overcoming these limitations.

Dr. Nathan Lazarus: Biology is often soft and stretchy, requiring unusual electrical materials and geometries to match surfaces such as human skin.  One of the biggest challenges in stretchable electronics has been the transfer of power and data signals, with physical wiring easily broken during use.  In this talk, we will discuss all aspects of creating inductors and power circuits for wireless power of stretchable systems.  Through the use of liquid metal conductors and our demonstration of the first stretchable magnetic core inductor, we will show adding stretchability does not mandate a dramatic loss in electrical performance.  We’ll conclude by demonstrating power transfer efficiency as high as 92%, the highest ever demonstrated for inductive wireless power transfer to a stretchable system.