Indian scientists use tiny bubbles draw plastic circuits

Indian scientists use tiny bubbles to draw plastic circuits

11:13 AM, 31st July 2017
Indian scientists use tiny bubbles to draw plastic circuits. (File photo)
Indian researchers have developed a technique for printing flexible electronics such as radio frequency identification devices. The technique uses laser driven micro-bubbles to write or make patterns on transparent surfaces. (File photo)

NEW DELHI, INDIA: Indian scientists have found a way to use micro-bubbles to draw complex plastic circuits with lasers, an advance that may lead to low-cost flexible electronic devices.

Solution-printed electronics is one of the fastest growing areas in the industry primarily due to its very low cost and flexibility, researchers from the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) in Kolkata said.

It is mostly based on conducting plastics, that is doped to increase conductivity.

The process of synthesising, doping and designing circuits separately is often complex and time-consuming.

The research was published in the journal of Materials Chemistry C.

For the first time, scientists led by Ayan Banerjee and Soumyajit Roy from IISER Kolkata, have developed a simple and inexpensive technique to simultaneously synthesise and pattern conductive polymers on a glass surface in a matter of minutes.

They exposed a solution of charged metal oxide, known as soft oxometalate (SOM) and organic molecules in a glass chamber to optical tweezers - a tightly focused laser.

Absorbing the beam, oxometalate stuck to the chamber surface to form a microbubble around which the metal oxide and organic molecules assembled themselves to form conductive polymers.

"This patterning technique was discovered somewhat serendipitously when one of my graduate students was working with SOMs in optical tweezers and noticed these bubbles grow unexpectedly," Banerjee, associate professor at IISER Kolkata, told PTI.

Bubbles in optical tweezers often occur when the tightly focused laser hits some accumulated material which partially absorbs the light so that the local temperature increases very rapidly.

However, these also can be dispensed easily by just redirecting the laser or shutting it off.

"In the case with the SOMs, the student observed that when he tried to move the laser away, the bubble followed it, and in the process generated a pattern in its wake," Banerjee said.

"We then proceeded to unravel this mystery, and in the process understood the phenomenon, which took more than a year. The research revealed fascinating explanations, which then led to us think of various applications," he said.

This method can be used for complex electronic circuits which are useful for fabricating electronic devices such as micro-capacitors.

According to Roy, associate professor at IISER Kolkata, the method is cheaper and much easier than several existing technologies.

"The method can even be used to make biodegradable flexible plastic circuits," Roy added.

© PTI News



Your Comments (Up to 2000 characters)
Please respect our community and the integrity of its participants. WOC reserves the right to moderate and approve your comment.

Related News

New light-activated catalyst that turns CO2 into fuel

BERKELEY, US: Scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore have deve ...

Read more
Arkema to double thiochemicals production in Malaysia

COLOMBES, FRANCE: Arkema announced a project to double its methyl mercaptan production capacity at its Kerteh site in Malaysia. This is in line to su ...

Read more
Shell shuts down Europe’s largest refinery after major fire

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS: Royal Dutch Shell plc said that it has shut down Europe’s largest refinery in Rotterdam, the Netherlands after a fi ...

Read more
BASF establishes new company to focus on 3D printing

LUDWIGSHAFEN, GERMANY: BASF SE plans to establish a new group company, BASF 3D Printing Solutions GmbH, as of 1 September. This wholly-owned subsidiar ...

Read more
KBR bags contract for ammonia plant revamp in Russia

HOUSTON, US: KBR Inc (KBR) has been awarded a contract by Dorogobuzh JSC (owned by JSC ACRON) to provide licensing and basic engineering design ( ...

Read more
Grace licenses UNIPOL technology to firm in Canada

COLUMBIA, US: W R Grace & Co (GRA) has contracted to license its UNIPOL PP process technology to Canada Kuwait Petrochemical Corporation (CKP ...

Read more uses cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By using this site, you agree to our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Use. X