Organic Semiconductors Make Flexible Circuits And Screens A Possibility

Days are not far away, when we will, eventually, come to see ultra-efficients digital circuits. Thanks to the “polymeric n-channel semiconductors—practically ones—were unknown....,” as described by Antonio Facchetti, chief technology officer, Polyera Corp.

Such efficient digital circuits became a possibility when researchers, headed by Faccheti, came to find out a polymer which is said to revolutionize the printing method of electronics circuits on plastic. This polymer is said to be an organic semiconductor.

This latest polymer conducts electrons, a feature unheard so far about other types of such materials used to make semiconductors. Necessarily, nost of the polymers carry positive electric charges.

According to the researchers, they have succeeded in printing a CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor ) circuit combining this latest find along with the older semiconductors.

Thus the combination of existing p-type materials, carrying positive charges, and this recently developed n-type polymer which carries electrons has opened a new road for flexible or bendable digital circuits.

Such flexible semiconductors are more powerful and efficient. “If you want to enable high-performance CMOS electronics, you need both p-channel and n-channel semiconductors,”
 Faccheti further says.

This polymer, based on naphthalene-bis(dicarboximide), is highly soluble, so it can be turned into an ink and can be printed digitally. However, its solubility doesn't mar its effective and high speed of electron mobility. Its electron mobility is said to be between 0.45 and 0.85 cm2/Vs.

Such a speed is far greater and satisfying as compared to the much below 0.5 cm2/Vs, the electron mobility rate of all the existing polymers. The researchers hope to upgrade the speed up to 1 cm2/Vs in coming years.

Undoubtedly, this invention is going to give a completely different shape to the way, the manufacturers used to make computer screens and sensor tags. Now they will be able to produce flexible screens and sensor tags which will be available at highly low prices.

The detailed story can be read at the online version of the journal Nature.

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