New graphene printing technology can produce electronic circuits that are low-cost, flexible, highly conductive and water repellent.
The nanotechnology “would lend enormous value to self-cleaning wearable/washable electronics that are resistant to stains, or ice and biofilm formation,” according to a recent paper describing the discovery.
“We’re taking low-cost, inkjet-printed graphene and tuning it with a laser to make functional materials,” said Jonathan Claussen, an Iowa State University assistant professor of mechanical engineering, an associate of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory and the corresponding author of the paper recently featured on the cover of the journal Nanoscale.
The paper describes how Claussen and the nanoengineers in his research group use inkjet printing technology to create electric circuits on flexible materials. In this case, the ink is flakes of graphene — the wonder material can be a great conductor of electricity and heat, plus it’s strong, stable and biocompatible.