3D printed flexible capacitive force sensor with a simple micro-controller based readout

Martijn G. Schouten, Remco Sanders, Gijs Krijnen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

    30 Citations (Scopus)
    1351 Downloads (Pure)


    This paper describes the development of a proof of principle of a flexible force sensor and the corresponding readout circuit. The flexible force sensor consists of a parallel plate capacitor that is 3D printed using regular and conductive thermoplastic poly-urethane (TPU). The capacitance change due to an applied sinusoidal force is measured using an LCR meter. A proof of principle, using an oscillatory readout circuit consisting of only an operational amplifier and a frequency-counter based on an Arduino Nano, is provided. This indicates the possibility to implement low-cost capactive sensors into 3D printed objects, which is especially interesting for customised robotic and prosthetic applications.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationIEEE SENSORS 2017
    Number of pages3
    ISBN (Electronic)9781509010127
    Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2017
    Event16th IEEE Sensors 2017 - Scottish Event Campus, Glasgow, United Kingdom
    Duration: 29 Oct 20171 Nov 2017
    Conference number: 16


    Conference16th IEEE Sensors 2017
    Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
    Internet address


    • 3D printing
    • Capacitive Sensors
    • Elastomer
    • Force sensor
    • Fused Deposition Modeling
    • TPU


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