Highly stretchable polymer semiconductor films through the nanoconfinement effect
2017; 355 (6320): 59-?
Soft and conformable wearable electronics require stretchable semiconductors, but existing ones typically sacrifice charge transport mobility to achieve stretchability. We explore a concept based on the nanoconfinement of polymers to substantially improve the stretchability of polymer semiconductors, without affecting charge transport mobility. The increased polymer chain dynamics under nanoconfinement significantly reduces the modulus of the conjugated polymer and largely delays the onset of crack formation under strain. As a result, our fabricated semiconducting film can be stretched up to 100% strain without affecting mobility, retaining values comparable to that of amorphous silicon. The fully stretchable transistors exhibit high biaxial stretchability with minimal change in on current even when poked with a sharp object. We demonstrate a skinlike finger-wearable driver for a light-emitting diode.
View details for DOI 10.1126/science.aah4496
View details for Web of Science ID 000391739900042
View details for PubMedID 28059762
Intrinsically stretchable and healable semiconducting polymer for organic transistors
2016; 539 (7629): 411-415
Thin-film field-effect transistors are essential elements of stretchable electronic devices for wearable electronics. All of the materials and components of such transistors need to be stretchable and mechanically robust. Although there has been recent progress towards stretchable conductors, the realization of stretchable semiconductors has focused mainly on strain-accommodating engineering of materials, or blending of nanofibres or nanowires into elastomers. An alternative approach relies on using semiconductors that are intrinsically stretchable, so that they can be fabricated using standard processing methods. Molecular stretchability can be enhanced when conjugated polymers, containing modified side-chains and segmented backbones, are infused with more flexible molecular building blocks. Here we present a design concept for stretchable semiconducting polymers, which involves introducing chemical moieties to promote dynamic non-covalent crosslinking of the conjugated polymers. These non-covalent crosslinking moieties are able to undergo an energy dissipation mechanism through breakage of bonds when strain is applied, while retaining high charge transport abilities. As a result, our polymer is able to recover its high field-effect mobility performance (more than 1 square centimetre per volt per second) even after a hundred cycles at 100 per cent applied strain. Organic thin-film field-effect transistors fabricated from these materials exhibited mobility as high as 1.3 square centimetres per volt per second and a high on/off current ratio exceeding a million. The field-effect mobility remained as high as 1.12 square centimetres per volt per second at 100 per cent strain along the direction perpendicular to the strain. The field-effect mobility of damaged devices can be almost fully recovered after a solvent and thermal healing treatment. Finally, we successfully fabricated a skin-inspired stretchable organic transistor operating under deformations that might be expected in a wearable device.
View details for DOI 10.1038/nature20102
View details for Web of Science ID 000388161700050
View details for PubMedID 27853213
- Inducing Elasticity through Oligo-Siloxane Crosslinks for Intrinsically Stretchable Semiconducting Polymers ADVANCED FUNCTIONAL MATERIALS 2016; 26 (40): 7254-7262