Case 13910

Health Monitering of Civil Structures Using Electroactive Sensory Skin


Differential sensor, Sensor skin, Structural Health Monitoring (SHM), Dielectric Electroactive Polymer (DEAP)


Civil infrastructures

  • Real-time monitoring of civil structures
  • Non-destructive evaluation of the safety of civil structures


The invention provides a new structural health monitoring (SHM) system for civil structures that deploys layers of dielectric electroactive polymer (DEAP) on the surface of structural elements and regularly monitors any change in the structural state. DEAPs are highly sensitive to an applied strain, which causes a large and measureable change in the capacitance of the DEAP. With the electronics employed and a proper configuration of sensor patches, changes in strain on the monitored surface can be localized, which allows a more precise analysis of possible structural deficiencies. The system can provide real-time monitoring of civil structures in a large scale.

  • Low electrical power consumption
  • Low environmental impact
  • Low cost in manufacture and use

  • Simon Laflame(Department of Civil Engineering, MIT)
  • Matthias Kollosche (Institute of Physics and Astronomy, University of Potsdam, Germany)
  • Dr. Guggi Kofod (Institute of Physics and Astronomy, University of Potsdam, Germany)

Intellectual Property:

U.S. Patent Number 8,384,398, issued on February 26, 2013


Laflamme S., Yu T.-Y., Connor J. J., Intelligent Controller for Smart Base Isolation of Masonry Structures, International Workshop on Smart Materials and Structures, Canada, October 2009.

Last revised: April 29, 2013

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