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Highly conductive and elastic conductors using silver nanowires

Silver nanowires can be printed to fabricate patterned stretchable conductors

Researchers at North Carolina State University developed highly conductive and elastic conductors made from silver nanoscale wires (nanowires). The silver nanowires can be printed to fabricate patterned stretchable conductors.

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In 2012, researchers at North Carolina State University (NC State) developed highly conductive and elastic conductors made from silver nanoscale wires (nanowires). These elastic conductors can be used to develop stretchable electronic devices.

Stretchable circuitry can be used as an electronic "skin" to help robots pick up delicate objects without breaking them, and stretchable displays and antennas could make cellphones and other electronic devices stretch and compress without affecting their performance. However, first conductors must be produced that are elastic and able to effectively and reliably transmit electric signals regardless of whether they are deformed. The NC State researchers developed such elastic conductors using silver nanowires.

The new technique developed at NC State embeds highly conductive silver nanowires in a polymer that can withstand significant stretching without adversely affecting the materialís conductivity. This makes it attractive as a component for use in stretchable electronic devices.

This research was supported by the National Science Foundation (grant CMMI 10-30637).

This research was funded by NSF (grant CMMI 10-30637).

To learn more about this research, see the NC State news story Researchers Create Highly Conductive and Elastic Conductors Using Silver Nanowires. (Date image taken: 2011; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: Dec. 27, 2017)

Credit: Yong Zhu, North Carolina State University
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