Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Designer electronics out of the printer: Optimized printing process enables custom organic electronics

Organic electronics, based on conducting polymers, are hailed as a promising future market. This is the cover illustration of Advanced Materials (10.1002/adma.201570148).
CREDIT: Artwork: Christoph Hohmann / Nanosystems Initiative Munich
Organic electronics, based on conducting polymers, are hailed as a promising future market. This is the cover illustration of Advanced Materials (10.1002/adma.201570148).

CREDIT: Artwork: Christoph Hohmann / Nanosystems Initiative Munich

Abstract:
They are thin, light-weight, flexible and can be produced cost- and energy-efficiently: printed microelectronic components made of synthetics. Flexible displays and touch screens, glowing films, RFID tags and solar cells represent a future market. In the context of an international cooperation project, physicists at the Technische Universität München (TUM) have now observed the creation of razor thin polymer electrodes during the printing process and successfully improved the electrical properties of the printed films.

Designer electronics out of the printer: Optimized printing process enables custom organic electronics

Muenchen, Germany | Posted on June 16th, 2015

Solar cells out of a printer? This seemed unthinkable only a few years ago. There were hardly any alternatives to classical silicon technology available. In the mean time touch screens, sensors and solar cells can be made of conducting polymers. Flexible monitors and glowing wall paper made of organic light emitting diodes, so-called OLEDs, are in rapid development. The "organic electronics" are hailed as a promising future market.

However, the technology also has its pitfalls: To manufacture the components on an industrial scale, semiconducting or insulating layers - each a thousand times thinner than a human hair - must be printed onto a carrier film in a predefined order. "This is a highly complex process, whose details need to be fully understood to allow custom-tailored applications," explains Professor Peter Müller-Buschbaum of the Chair of Functional Materials at TU München.

A further challenge is the contacting between flexible, conducting layers. Hitherto electronic contacts made of crystalline indium tin oxide were frequently used. However, this construction has numerous drawbacks: The oxide is more brittle than the polymer layers over them, which limits the flexibility of the cells. Furthermore, the manufacturing process also consumes much energy. Finally, indium is a rare element that exists only in very limited quantities.

Polymers in X-ray light

A few months ago, researchers from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California for the first time succeeded in observing the cross-linking of polymer molecules in the active layer of an organic solar cell during the printing process. In collaboration with their colleagues in California, Müller-Buschbaum's team took advantage of this technology to improve the characteristics of the polymer electronic elements.

The researchers used X-ray radiation generated in the Berkley synchrotron for their investigations. The X-rays are directed to the freshly printed synthetic layer and scattered. The arrangement and orientation of the molecules during the curing process of the printed films can be determined from changes in the scattering pattern.

"Thanks to the very intensive X-ray radiation we can achieve a very high time resolution," says Claudia M. Palumbiny. In Berkeley the physicist from the TUM investigated the "blocking layer" that sorts and selectively transports the charge carriers in the organic electronic components. The TUM research team is now, together with its US colleagues, publishing the results in the trade journal Advanced Materials.

Custom properties

"In our work, we showed for the first time ever that even small changes in the physico-chemical process conditions have a significant influence on the build-up and properties of the layer," says Claudia M. Palumbiny. "Adding solvents with a high boiling point, for example, improves segregation in synthetics components. This improves the crystallization in conducting molecules. The distance between the molecules shrinks and the conductivity increases.

In this manner stability and conductivity can be improved to such an extent that the material can be deployed not only as a blocking layer, but even as a transparent, electrical contact. This can be used to replace the brittle indium tin oxide layers. "At the end of the day, this means that all layers could be produced using the same process," explains Palumbiny. "That would be a great advantage for manufacturers."

To make all of this possible one day, TUM researchers want to continue investigating and optimizing the electrode material further and make their know-how available to industry. "We have now formed the basis for pushing ahead materials development with future investigations so that these can be taken over by industrial enterprises," explains Prof. Müller-Buschbaum.

###

The research was supported by the GreenTech Initiative "Interface Science for Photovoltaics" (ISPV) of the EuroTech Universities together with the International Graduate School of Science and Engineering (IGSSE) at TUM and by the Cluster of Excellence "Nanosystems Initiative Munich" (NIM). Further support came from the Elite Network of Bavaria's International Doctorate Program "NanoBioTechnology" (IDK-NBT) and the Center for NanoScience (CeNS) and from "Polymer-Based Materials for Harvesting Solar Energy" (PHaSE), an Energy Frontier Research Center funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences. Portions of the research were carried out at the Advanced Light Source which receives support by the Office of Basic Energy Sciences of the U.S. Department of Energy.

Publication:

The Crystallization of PEDOT:PSS Polymeric Electrodes Probed In Situ during Printing
Claudia M. Palumbiny, Feng Liu, Thomas P. Russell, Alexander Hexemer, Cheng Wang, and Peter Müller-Buschbaum
Advanced Materials, June 10, 2015, 27, 22, 3391-3397 - DOI: 10.1002/adma.201500315

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Dr. Andreas Battenberg

49-892-891-0510

Copyright © Technische Universitaet Muenchen

If 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.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Elliot Scientific now representing Raman Imaging specialists WITec in the UK and Eire - Unique correlative analysis in one instrument: Raman/AFM, Raman/SNOM December 10th, 2018

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

GaN Rising: UC Santa Barbara electrical and computer engineering professor Umesh Mishra to deliver 63rd Annual Faculty Research Lecture November 16th, 2018

Iran Unveils Its First Homegrown 3D Nano Printer October 17th, 2018

Aculon, Inc. Enters into Strategic Partnership Agreement with Henkel Corporation to Supply Key Mobile Device Manufacturers with NanoProof® PCB Waterproof Technology October 17th, 2018

Environmentally friendly photoluminescent nanoparticles for more vivid display colors: Osaka University-led researchers created a new type of light-emitting nanoparticle that is made of ternary non-toxic semiconductors to help create displays and LED lighting with better colors t August 29th, 2018

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

It's not a shock: Better bandage promotes powerful healing November 29th, 2018

French Researchers Extend Reach of Mass Spectrometry with Nanomechanical Resonators: Neutral Mass Spectrometry’ Fills Gap In Existing Weighing Technologies November 27th, 2018

Three CEA Projects Awarded European Research Council Synergy Grants November 26th, 2018

Sensors

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Spectradyne Partners with Particle Technology Labs for Measurement Services December 6th, 2018

CEA-Leti Extends 300mm Line and Adds Avenues for Developing Disruptive Technologies: Execution Relies on CEA-Leti’s Fully Implemented Technology With Module-Level Innovations & Devices and Their Architectures December 3rd, 2018

Study unlocks full potential of 'supermaterial' graphene: Researchers remove silicon contamination from graphene to double its performance November 30th, 2018

Discoveries

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Iran Develops Water-Repellent Nano-Paint December 5th, 2018

Materials/Metamaterials

Iran Develops Water-Repellent Nano-Paint December 5th, 2018

GaN Rising: UC Santa Barbara electrical and computer engineering professor Umesh Mishra to deliver 63rd Annual Faculty Research Lecture November 16th, 2018

Optimization of alloy materials: Diffusion processes in nano particles decoded November 13th, 2018

Unlocking the Secrets of Metal-Insulator Transitions: X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy at NSLS-II's CSX beamline used to understand electrical conductivity transitions in magnetite November 8th, 2018

Announcements

Elliot Scientific now representing Raman Imaging specialists WITec in the UK and Eire - Unique correlative analysis in one instrument: Raman/AFM, Raman/SNOM December 10th, 2018

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

A new 'spin' on kagome lattices: Team's findings shed new light on the presence of spin-orbit coupling and topological spin textures in kagome lattices December 9th, 2018

Milestone for bERLinPro: Photocathodes with high quantum efficiency December 8th, 2018

Harnessing the power of 'spin orbit' coupling in silicon: Scaling up quantum computation December 7th, 2018

New research could fine-tune the gene scissors CRISPR December 1st, 2018

Energy

New catalyst produces cheap hydrogen November 30th, 2018

New insight into molecular processes November 23rd, 2018

Rice U. scientists form flat tellurium: Two-dimensional element shows promise for solar cells and other optoelectronics October 26th, 2018

How to mass produce cell-sized robots: Technique from MIT could lead to tiny, self-powered devices for environmental, industrial, or medical monitoring October 24th, 2018

Research partnerships

Three CEA Projects Awarded European Research Council Synergy Grants November 26th, 2018

Researchers create new 'smart' material with potential biomedical, environmental uses November 23rd, 2018

Cea-Leti and imec Launch Strategic Partnership to Develop AI and Quantum Computing November 23rd, 2018

Epoxy compound gets a graphene bump: Rice scientists combine graphene foam, epoxy into tough, conductive composite November 14th, 2018

Solar/Photovoltaic

Study unlocks full potential of 'supermaterial' graphene: Researchers remove silicon contamination from graphene to double its performance November 30th, 2018

Perovskite solar cells leap toward commercialization September 28th, 2018

September 5th, 2018

NUST MISIS scientists present metamaterial for solar cells and nanooptics July 23rd, 2018

RFID

Nanowire 'inks' enable paper-based printable electronics: Highly conductive films make functional circuits without adding high heat January 4th, 2017

Conformal transfer of graphene for reproducible device fabrication August 11th, 2015

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Launches Industry’s First 22nm FD-SOI Technology Platform: 22FDX offers the best combination of performance, power consumption and cost for IoT, mainstream mobile, RF connectivity, and networking July 13th, 2015

New micro-supercapacitor structure inspired by the intricate design of leaves: A team of scientists in Korea has devised a new method for making a graphene film for supercapacitors July 2nd, 2015

Printing/Lithography/Inkjet/Inks/Bio-printing

Nanoscribe Presents Successor Model Photonic Professional GT2 for High-Resolution 3D Microfabrication: The first ever production of structures in millimeter size with micrometer precision December 4th, 2018

CEA-Leti Extends 300mm Line and Adds Avenues for Developing Disruptive Technologies: Execution Relies on CEA-Leti’s Fully Implemented Technology With Module-Level Innovations & Devices and Their Architectures December 3rd, 2018

Iran Unveils Its First Homegrown 3D Nano Printer October 17th, 2018

Laser sintering optimized for printed electronics: New study sheds (laser) light on the best means of laying down thin-film circuitry September 13th, 2018

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project