Open Source EMG Biosensor Coming to a Muscle Near You

The FlexVolt biosensor for EMG

Every time a muscle moves, it generates a tiny electrical signal. For years doctors and scientists have been able to measure those signals using surface electromyography (EMG). Until now, the equipment has been expensive and complicated. FlexVolt is hoping to make the technology accessible to anyone for under $100.

Mechanical engineer Dr. Brendan Flynn wants put biomedical sensors in every home and school that wants them. FlexVolt is his first project. He envisions users creating man-machine interfaces, exploring physical therapy feedback and sharing the equipment with students for education and research.

The FlexVolt will be available in Arduino, USB, and Bluetooth configurations, complete with sticker electrodes. Two-, four-, and eight-channel versions are available, allowing for a variety of applications. The sensor is PC, Mac, and Linux compatible, with iPad and Android apps on the way. The code is open-source, using Processing, making it easy for users to develop further applications.

Flynn launched a Kickstarter campaign, but the project didn’t reach its funding goal. However, the page notes that FlexVolt is currently taking pre-orders on their site:

We are preparing the first production run now and we expect to be able to start shipping the FlexVolt sensors by early April, if not sooner. Thank you to all who supported the FlexVolt Project. Though we did not reach our funding goals on Kickstarter, your feedback and interest has given us the momentum we needed to get FlexVolt off the ground.

Sandy Roberts

She/Her. Scientist. Educator. Maker. Learner. Entrepreneur. Mom. Wife. Nerd. Author: The Big Book of Maker Camp Projects. 2021 MakerCamp Director for Make:.

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