MEMS actuator for splinter-like skin penetration in glucose-sensing applications: Design and demonstration

Martin J. Berka, Orly Yadid-Pecht, Martin P. Mintchev, Gang Wang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


This paper discusses the design of a new actuator mechanism for the e-Mosquito, an autonomous wearable blood glucose monitoring system with autonomous insertion of single-use needles. The actuator converts tensile force from a contracting shape memory alloy wire into non-linear extension of a needle from a casing and allows both needle and casing to be replaced. It has fewer disposable parts, no fixed rotating elements, and reduced thickness. In vitro tests demonstrate that a prototype of the mechanism is capable of driving a 28-gauge lancet needle with sufficient initial force to enter the skin, and to penetrate to a maximal depth of 1.5 mm in pig skin. This opens the way for further miniaturization of the system.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIEEE Sensors, SENSORS 2016 - Proceedings
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9781479982875
StatePublished - 5 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event15th IEEE Sensors Conference, SENSORS 2016 - Orlando, United States
Duration: 30 Oct 20162 Nov 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of IEEE Sensors
ISSN (Print)1930-0395
ISSN (Electronic)2168-9229


Conference15th IEEE Sensors Conference, SENSORS 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • actuator
  • glucose
  • needle
  • skin
  • wearable

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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