Develop self-powered e-skin with neural nanowire field effect transistors based neural data processing hardware. Graphene is a proven nanomaterial for the fabrication of sensitive e-skin due to attributes such as flexibility, optical transparency and large area monolayer structure. Recent, a self-powered e-skin system combining a transparent graphene tactile sensor with a photovoltaic cell was shown to sufficient power (~20 nWcm−2) for the system to attain energy autonomy. Integration of such a tactile sensor with robotic and prosthetic limbs with smart data processing hardware is hugely beneficial. Additionally, we propose to use nanowires based neuromorphic circuits, that we demonstrated to be effective to carry out intricate tactile data processing. In this project, the ESR will develop graphene based e-skin and integrate it with υ-NWFET circuits. CVD graphene will be transferred over transparent PVC substrate using hot lamination technique and this will be followed by deposition of metal electrodes. Commercial PV cells will be integrated with the graphene sensor layer to obtain energy-efficient skin. Silicon NWs based floating gate FETs will be fabricated as a building block for neuromorphic data processing circuits.

Expected Results

A new strategy to process tactile information in robotic and prosthetic systems and the corresponding hardware neural network system based on Si nanowires

Planned Secondments

  • UNIBI (Chicca):
    M12-16 training on neuromorphic enigneering
  • IIT-iCub (Bartolozzi) :
    M32-33 e- skin comparison with POSFET devices with basic neural building blocks
  • SensArs (Petrini) :
    M36-39 to integrate e-skin on prosthetic hand

Enrolments (in Doctoral degree/s)

University of Glasgow


R. Dahiya, E. Chicca, C. Bartolozzi, F. Petrini


ESR14: Neural nanowire based tactile skin
This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (Grant agreement No. 813713 ).
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