L-up is excited to be part of FITNESS, a visionary new EIC Pathfinder project that will develop flexible smart skins able to provide a non-contact sense of “touch”.
The underlying key technology is that of meta-surfaces, i.e. structured surfaces that have unusual properties at some frequencies. The approach combines a variety of fields: RF front-end circuits, chemistry and polymer materials, flexible substrates, silicon integration, phased array antennas, metamaterials, numerical modelling, thermal management and communication systems. The smart skin devices will essentially work by measuring the transmittance between a limited number of ports (sparse electronics) through surface waves that follow the shape of the smart skin which is wrapped around the robot or body.
The first demonstrator will be realised in the field of robotics, while later applications are envisaged in the medical area. One of the main societal outputs will be a more harmonious collaboration between robots and humans through the constant probing of their respective near-field environments.
FITNESS is a four-year Horizon Europe project (grant agreement number 101098996) with a total budget of 3.6 million Euros. More specifically, FITNESS is funded under the EIC Pathfinder Programme. The project officially started on 1 April 2023. The kick-off meeting was held on 14 April 2023 and was hosted by UCL. L-UP’s role within FITNESS is to support project coordination and lead communication and dissemination activities.
Click here to download the official press release (pdf link).