Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering


Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Massood Z. Atashbar

Second Advisor

Dr. Bradley J. Bazuin

Third Advisor

Dr. Binu B. Narakathu

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Dinesh Maddipatla


Flexible Hybrid Electronics (FHE), pressure sensors, software development, wearable healthcare monitoring, machine learning

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


In this work, a pressure sensing system was designed and fabricated by developing a highly sensitive cone-structured pressure sensor with a custom-built software for physiological monitoring applications. A novel highly sensitive cone structured porous polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) based pressure sensor capable of detecting very low-pressure ranges was developed for respiration monitoring. The pressure sensor was fabricated using a master mold, a hybrid-structured dielectric layer, and fabric-based electrodes. The master mold with inverted cone structures was created using a rapid and precise three-dimensional (3D) printing technique. The dielectric layer, with pores and cone structures, was prepared by annealing a mixture of PDMS, nitric acid (HNO3) and sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) in a master mold with inverted cone structures. The electrodes were developed by screen printing silver functional ink on fabric. The porous-cone structures provided enhanced deformation and thus resulted in high sensitivity for detecting very low-pressure ranges below 100 Pa. As an application demonstration, the pressure sensor was sewed inside a surgical mask and its capability to detect different respiration rates (normal, fast, and deep breathes) was investigated. An airflow controller system and a custom- built software was also developed for performing continuous sensor data acquisition and capacitance conversions for varying airflow rates.