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Akron OH (SPX) Jun 10, 2014
University of Akron polymer scientists have developed a transparent electrode that could change the face of smartphones, literally, by making their displays shatterproof.
In a recently published scientific paper, researchers demonstrated how a transparent layer of electrodes on a polymer surface could be extraordinarily tough and flexible, withstanding repeated scotch tape peeling and bending tests.
This could revolutionize and replace conventional touchscreens, according to Yu Zhu, UA assistant professor of polymer science. Currently used coatings made of indium tin oxide (ITO) are more brittle, most likely to shatter, and increasingly costly to manufacture.
Novel and cost-effective
"We expect this film to emerge on the market as a true ITO competitor," Zhu says. "The annoying problem of cracked smartphone screens may be solved once and for all with this flexible touchscreen.
The team's findings are published in the American Chemical Society's journal ACS Nano in the article titled "A Tough and High-Performance Transparent Electrode from a Scalable and Transfer-Free Method."
This research was conducted by Zhu, UA graduate students Tianda He and Aozhen Xia, and Darrell Reneker, distinguished professor of polymer science at UA.
The University of Akron
Space Technology News - Applications and Research
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