‘Electronic skins’ are like temporary tattoos that stick to the skin and record blood pressure, heartbeats, and brain activity as accurately as bulky traditional electrodes.
A team of scientists, led by Prof. Jang-Ung Park (School of Materials Science and Engineering) has engineered a stretchable and transparent graphene electrode, using hybrid structures of graphene-metal nanotrough networks.
This joint research team includes Prof. Park, Prof. Byeong Su Bae from KAIST, and Executive Director Hye Yong Chu from the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI).
In a paper published online October 14, 2014, in Nano Letters, Prof. Park’s research team demonstrated that this type of electronic skin can still maintain its electrical and optical properties stably against large mechanical deformations, even when bent right in the center.
Prof. Park says “There have been a number of studies have addressed the issues associated with ‘electronic skin’ in the past, but had a problem with visible electrical circuits.” He adds, “However, with this discovery, these transparent and skin-attachable electrodes can be used more practically in numerous applications of flexible and wearable electronics.”
In addition to the effect on the efficiency of current transparent electronic circuits, this discovery has improved the uniformity of sheet resistance significantly by combining graphene with metal fibers. This has been one of the major challenges with getting graphene to work as an electrode.
An BW, Hyun BG, Kim SY, Kim M, Lee MS, Lee K, Koo JB, Chu HY, Bae BS, Park JU.
Stretchable and Transparent Electrodes using Hybrid Structures of Graphene-Metal Nanotrough Networks with High Performances and Ultimate Uniformity. Nano Letter. 2014 Oct 14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 25299634.