Samsung is testing expandable displays with heart rate sensor

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According to Samsung, researchers were able to integrate an expandable OLED display with a PPG sensor into a single device to measure and display a user’s heart rate in real time.

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Consumer electronics maker Samsung has launched numerous displays over the years, including dynamic flexible displays in some of its high-end devices. Its researchers are now exploring expandable screens that can be extended in any direction like rubber bands to change their shapes, the company said in a statement.

A team of researchers from the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT), Samsung’s R&D center for advanced future technologies, has published its research on a technology that overcomes the limitations of expandable devices, in the journal “Progress of science”.

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According to Samsung, researchers were able to integrate an expandable organic LED (OLED) display with a photoplethysmography (PPG) sensor into a single device to measure and display a user’s heart rate in real time.

The team tested their work by attaching the expandable PPG heart rate sensor and OLED display system to the inside of the wrist near the radial artery. They were able to confirm that the sensor and screen continued to function normally and showed no performance drop with up to 30% stretch, the tech giant said.

The South Korean company claims that the OLED sensor and display continued to perform stably even after being stretched 1,000 times. Additionally, when measuring signals from a moving wrist, the sensor picked up a heartbeat signal 2.4 times stronger than it would have picked up by a stationary silicon sensor, the company added.

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“The strength of this technology is that it allows you to measure your biometric data for a longer period of time without having to remove the solution when you sleep or exercise, since the patch looks like part of your skin. You can also verify your biometric data immediately on the screen without having to transfer it to an external device, ”Youngjun Yun, senior researcher at SAIT, said in a statement.

Development and future applications

Usually when a screen is stretched, the device breaks or its performance is affected. To solve this problem, the researchers replaced the plastic material used in existing stretch screens with an elastomer – an advanced material with high elasticity and resilience, and further enhanced the heat resistance of the material, Samsung noted.

In addition, they developed the expandable sensor in a way that allows continuous heart rate measurements by facilitating close adhesion to the skin, which minimizes performance inconsistencies that can be caused by movement, he explained.

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“Our research is still in its early stages, but our goal is to realize and commercialize expandable devices by increasing system resolution, scalability, and measurement accuracy to a level that makes mass production possible. “said Jong Won Chung, senior researcher at SAIT. in a report.

“We plan to incorporate expandable sensors and high-resolution free-form displays to allow users to monitor things such as peripheral oxygen saturation, electromyogram readings and blood pressure. “


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