Development of an ultra-sensitive and flexible piezoresistive flow sensor using vertical graphene nanosheets

Sajad Abolpour Moshizi, Shohreh Azadi, Andrew Belford, Amir Razmjou, Shuying Wu, Zhao Jun Han, Mohsen Asadnia*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)
30 Downloads (Pure)


This paper suggests development of a flexible, lightweight, and ultra-sensitive piezoresistive flow sensor based on vertical graphene nanosheets (VGNs) with a mazelike structure. The sensor was thoroughly characterized for steady-state and oscillatory water flow monitoring applications. The results demonstrated a high sensitivity (103.91 mV (mm/s)(-1)) and a very low-velocity detection threshold (1.127 mm s(-1)) in steady-state flow monitoring. As one of many potential applications, we demonstrated that the proposed VGNs/PDMS flow sensor can closely mimic the vestibular hair cell sensors housed inside the semicircular canals (SCCs). As a proof of concept, magnetic resonance imaging of the human inner ear was conducted to measure the dimensions of the SCCs and to develop a 3D printed lateral semicircular canal (LSCC). The sensor was embedded into the artificial LSCC and tested for various physiological movements. The obtained results indicate that the flow sensor is able to distinguish minute changes in the rotational axis physical geometry, frequency, and amplitude. The success of this study paves the way for extending this technology not only to vestibular organ prosthesis but also to other applications such as blood/urine flow monitoring, intravenous therapy (IV), water leakage monitoring, and unmanned underwater robots through incorporation of the appropriate packaging of devices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalNano-Micro Letters
Issue number1
Early online date11 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2020. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Vertical graphene nanosheets
  • Artificial vestibular system
  • Bioinspired sensors
  • Piezoresistive sensors


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