A new approach to creating highly stretchable electronic devices using twisted conductive microtubules.
There is growing interest in stretchable and flexible electronic sensors and devices. Unlike conventional electronic devices, which are often rigid and bulky, stretchable electronics are well suited to being applied to the human body. They are also amenable to being integrated in curved or deformable mechanical systems. Despite increased interest and developments in highly stretchable and flexible sensors and devices, many challenges remain. There is a need for efficient fabrication methods and for design techniques that lead to durable devices whose performance can be tuned to meet application requirements. Few solutions exist that are able to meet such needs.
Researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara have discovered a new approach to creating highly stretchable electronic devices using twisted conductive microtubules. The devices are suited for use as stretchable electronic interconnects, and, in other applications, may be employed as sensitive sensors for strain, contact force, rotation, and tactile sensing. They offer very high levels of stretchability (>400% strain), are highly flexible, durable, and reliable. Through the use of a twisted helical structure, the electronic and mechanical performance of the devices can be tuned to meet application requirements. Their simple design makes it easy to attach them to the human body or to a mechanism or tool using standard fixtures or adhesives. The sensors are compact, multifunctional and can easily integrate into various applications such as robotics, soft electronics, healthcare, and many more.
|United States Of America||Issued Patent||10,908,038||02/02/2021||2017-470|