- About Us
- Career Center
- Nano-Social Network
- Nano Consulting
- My Account
Imagine a car windshield that displays a map to your destination, military goggles with targets and instructions displayed right before a soldier's eyes or a billboard that doubles as a window.
Only in science fiction you say? Northwestern University researchers report that by combining organic and inorganic materials they have produced transparent, high-performance transistors that can be assembled inexpensively on both glass and plastics.
The results of this breakthrough, which brings such futuristic high-quality displays closer to reality, were published in the November 2006 issue of the journal Nature Materials.
Researchers have long worked on developing new types of displays powered by electronics without visible wires. But, until now, no one was able to develop materials for transistors that could be "invisible" while still maintaining a high level of performance.
"Our development provides new strategies for creating transparent electronics," said Tobin J. Marks, the Vladimir N. Ipatieff Research Professor in Chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern and professor of materials science and engineering, who led the research. "You can imagine a variety of applications for new electronics that haven't been possible previously -- imagine displays of text or images that would seem to be floating in space."
Transistors are used for all the switching and computing necessary in electronics, and, in displays, they are used to power and switch the light sources.
High-performance, transparent transistors could be combined with existing kinds of light display technologies, such as organic light-emitting diodes, liquid crystal displays (LCDs) and electroluminescent displays, which are already used in televisions, desktop and laptop computers and cell phones.
To create their thin-film transistors, Marks' group combined films of the inorganic semiconductor indium oxide with a multilayer of self-assembling organic molecules that provides superior insulating properties.
The indium oxide films can be fabricated at room temperature, allowing the transistors to be produced at a low cost. And, in addition to being transparent, the transistors outperform the silicon transistors currently used in LCD screens and perform nearly as well as high-end polysilicon transistors.
Prototype displays using the transistors developed at Northwestern could be available in 12 to 18 months, said Marks. He has formed a start-up company, Polyera, to bring this and related technologies to market.
(Source contact: Tobin Marks at 847-491-5658 or )
About Northwestern News
Northwestern University combines innovative teaching and pioneering research in a highly collaborative environment that transcends traditional academic boundaries. It provides students and faculty exceptional opportunities for intellectual, personal, and professional growth in a setting enhanced by the richness of Chicago.
For more information, please click here
Megan Fellman at (847) 491-3115 or
Charles R. Loebbaka at (847) 491-4887
Copyright © Northwestern NewsIf you have a comment, please Contact us.
Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.
|Related News Press|
Down to the wire: ONR researchers and new bacteria August 18th, 2016
Smarter self-assembly opens new pathways for nanotechnology: Brookhaven Lab scientists discover a way to create billionth-of-a-meter structures that snap together in complex patterns with unprecedented efficiency August 9th, 2016
Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016
Nanofur for oil spill cleanup: Materials researchers learn from aquatic ferns: Hairy plant leaves are highly oil-absorbing / publication in bioinspiration & biomimetics / video on absorption capacity August 25th, 2016
Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016
Nanoparticles that speed blood clotting may someday save lives August 23rd, 2016
Curbing the life-long effects of traumatic brain injury August 19th, 2016
Researchers reduce expensive noble metals for fuel cell reactions August 22nd, 2016
Researchers watch catalysts at work August 19th, 2016
New X-Ray microscopy technique images nanoscale workings of rechargeable batteries: Method developed at Berkeley Lab's Advanced Light Source could help researchers improve battery performance August 7th, 2016
Call for NanoArt and Art-Science-Technology Papers June 9th, 2016
Are humans the new supercomputer?Today, people of all backgrounds can contribute to solving serious scientific problems by playing computer games. A Danish research group has extended the limits of quantum physics calculations and simultaneously blurred the boundaries between mac April 14th, 2016