Looking for material to detect pressure/hit

Thread Starter


Joined Mar 28, 2018
Hi, I want to construct a device with the following properties. It would have a piece of cloth or tape (or similar material), that on impact from an object (let's say a golf ball) sends an electrical signal to an indicator, for instance an LED. It needs to be battery operated.

So, in a nutshell, I am looking for this material that on impact would be able to close a circuit and light up an LED. Is there such a material?

Any suggestions welcome.


Joined Jan 23, 2018
What will work very well is a PVDF film, metalized and polarized. This is similar to the diaphram material in an electret condenser microphone, and it works exactly the same as that. We used it in a contact microphone sensor.
BUT if your application can accept a fairly solid barrier that stops the golf ball or whatever, then there is a simpler and cheaper approach, which is to attach one of those PZT sounder disks to the back side of a plate that will be hit by the object. Connect the wires prior to attaching, and then attach it with double-sided tape. The plate should be thick enough and stiff enough to not be deformed by the impact, and the voltage will be over a volt in most instances. You will need to ground the plate to the common of your system used to amplify the pulse from the sensor. This approach works very well, I used it quite a bit. You will need to have a fairly high impedance input in the sensor circuit.


Joined Jan 15, 2015
Depending on the surface if the surface is for example a hard backing where an object like a golf ball will bounce off an accelerometer could detect a bang or thump vibration, be amplified, and trigger a level detector followed by a D flip flop which would toggle a pair of LEDs, for example Red waiting for a hit and Green a hit has happened. Use a reset button to reset. You could use a piezo sensor as the sensor. All depends on the backing?



Joined Oct 29, 2013
If you just want to know IF it has been hit, something like attaching a Piezo vibration sensor to a regular piece of fabric or rubber might work for the detection part:


Or depending on the use case, you could just hang a pair of metal screens an inch or so apart and stretched tightly, make them part of the circuit in-series with your LED driver. When something hits the front one, the screens will touch lighting the LED, then after a moment they will settle back down and the LED will be off.