Imagine you are sitting on the sofa and forgot to take the TV remote control. What if the sofa armrest could act as a remote control? It could be possible with the new sprayable sensor technology developed by MIT.
Researchers from the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) of MIT have created a system called SprayableTech, which allows you to create interactive surfaces. Thanks to this new technology, you can spray a sign on your bedroom wall to turn it on, off and adjust the brightness of a light bulb, or you can turn your sofa into a TV remote.
How does Sprayable Tech, the spray sensor system work?
First, you create a graphic template in a 3D editor and generate the stencil for the airbrush. Once you have the cardboard stencil, you can spray itfunctional ink (an ink with electrically functional elements) on the surface to be transformed into a system. Finally, just connect a microcontroller to connect the surface to the controller that manages the devices.
In this video there are some applications to better understand the SprayTech process.
Michael Wessely, the lead author of the paper presenting SprayableTech, stated that this tool is quite flexible and can lead to many uses.
Large-scale spray sensors
Since SprayableTech is so flexible in its applications, one can imagine using this type of system beyond walls and surfaces to power large scale entities such as interactive smart cities and interactive architectures in public places.
Spray sensors could become a tool that allows humans to interact and use their environment in new ways.