Chameleon-Inspired Strain-Accommodating Smart Skin


A flexible smart skin that changes its color in response to heat or sunlight.

Key Benefits

  • Strain-accommodating.
  • Thermal and photothermal responsive.
  • Light responsive.
  • Highly stretchable.

Market Summary

Hydrogels are water-insoluble, three-dimensional networks of polymer chains capable of holding large amounts of water. They are commonly used as biomaterials designed for use in or on the human body and are finding widespread biomedical applications. Hydrogels can be used to create “Smart skins” or materials that can react to external stimuli while providing various physical and mechanical properties. They are used in multiple applications ranging from camouflage, biomaterials, communications, anti-counterfeiting, and biosensors. Unfortunately, limited smart skin technologies are available primarily due to structural instability and buckling current materials.

Technical Summary

Researchers have developed a novel flexible smart skin which changes its color in response to heat and sunlight. The researchers designed a strain-accommodating smart skin (SASS) which was composed of two types of hydrogels. The responsive photonic crystal (PC) layer is composed of monodispersed Fe(3)O(4)@SiO(2) particles organized systematically and confined within a cross-linked poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (pNIPAM) polymer). Finally, the robust supporting layer was composed nanoclay (Laponite XLG) doped tetra-polyethylene glycol (PEG).

Publication: Chameleon-Inspired Strain-Accommodating Smart Skin ACS Nano 2019, 13, 9, 9918–9926


Patent Information

App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Patent Status
Utility (parent) United States 17/397,318   8/9/2021   Pending
Tech ID: 20020
Published: 7/6/2022