Essity joins research project on circular sensor technology

Essity joins research projects upporting the development of circular electronic products.

Hygiene and health company Essity has joined the European research project Sustronics, which is supporting the development of circular electronic products.

Companies and universities from 11 countries will, together with Essity, develop sensor-based digital solutions for self and professional care.

The main purpose of Sustronics is to transform the European electronics industry and promote a more circular economy through the use of eco-design, bio-based materials and energy-efficient manufacturing.

As part of the project, electronic products will be redesigned to become circular, compostable and reusable products while highlighting business opportunities in sustainable electronics. 

The research project consists of nine pilot studies with a focus on healthcare and diagnostics. Prototypes will be developed and in parallel life cycle assessments and methods for eco-design will be applied to ensure sustainability.

Essity is participating in two pilot studies. One study aims to develop a reusable sensor, integrated into incontinence products that measures temperature, humidity and enzymes to avoid incontinence-related skin problems and enhance healthcare quality. The sensor uses data and AI algorithms to provide insights to the user or carer about issues such as skin health directly to a smartphone. 

The second pilot study involves the development of a smart wound dressing fitted with sensors that measure temperature, pH and biomarkers for infection in the wound. The solution has the potential to both enhance patient well-being and reduce healthcare costs. 

Tuomas Yrjölä, president global brand, innovation, and sustainability, at Essity, said advances in sensor technology can drastically improve preventive care and be a game changer for large patient groups.

“Through the Sustronics research project, we can further strengthen our innovative capacity while in parallel improving people’s health and well-being and contribute to a more sustainable and circular society.”

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