Navigation Links
NIST scientists address 'wrinkles' in transparent film development
Date:4/1/2010

A closer look at a promising nanotube coating that might one day improve solar cells has turned up a few unexpected wrinkles, according to new research* conducted at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and North Dakota State University (NDSU)research that also may help scientists iron out a solution.

The scientists have found that coatings made of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are not quite as deformable as hoped, implying that they are not an easy answer to problems that other materials present. Though films made of nanotubes possess many desirable properties, the team's findings reveal some issues that might need to be addressed before the full potential of these coatings is realized.

"The irony of these nanotube coatings is that they can change when they bend," says Erik Hobbie, now the director of the Materials and Nanotechnology program at NDSU. "Under modest strains, these films can develop irreversible changes in nanotube arrangement that reduce their conductivity. Our work is the first to suggest this, and it opens up new approaches to engineering the films in ways that minimize these effects."

High on the wish list of the solar power industry is a cheap, flexible, transparent coating that can conduct electricity. If this combination of properties can somehow be realized in a single material, solar cells might become far less expensive, and manufacturers might be able to put them in unexpected placessuch as articles of clothing. Transparent conductive coatings can be made of indium-tin oxide, but their rigidity and high cost make them less practical for widespread use.

Carbon nanotubes are one possible solution. Nanotubes, which resemble microscopic rolls of chicken wire, are inexpensive, easy to produce, and can be formed en masse into transparent conductive coatings whose weblike inner structure makes them not only strong but deformable, like paper or fabric. However, the team's research found that some kinds of stretching cause microscopic 'wrinkles' in the coating that disrupt the random arrangement of the nanotubes, which is what makes the coating conduct electricity.

"You want the nanotubes to stay randomly arranged," Hobbie says. "But when a nanotube coating wrinkles, it can lose the connected network that gives it conductivity. Instead, the nanotubes bundle irreversibly into ropelike formations."

Hobbie says the study suggests a few ways to address the problem, however. The films might be kept thin enough so the wrinkling might be avoided in the first place, or designers could engineer a second interpenetrating polymer network that would support the nanotube network, to keep it from changing too much in response to stress. "These approaches might allow us to make coatings of nanotubes that could withstand large strains while retaining the traits we want," Hobbie says.


'/>"/>

Contact: Chad Boutin
boutin@nist.gov
301-975-4261
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology technology :

1. Scientists discover worlds smallest superconductor
2. Carnegie Mellon scientists create rainbow of fluorescent probes
3. MIT scientists transform polyethylene into a heat-conducting material
4. Scientists discover how ocean bacterium turns carbon into fuel
5. Scientists glimpse nanobubbles on super nonstick surfaces
6. Princeton scientists find an equation for materials innovation
7. Scientists glimpse nanobubbles on super non-stick surfaces
8. Scientists transplant nose of mosquito, advance fight against malaria
9. Penn material scientists turn light into electrical current using a golden nanoscale system
10. Seeing the quantum in chemistry: JILA scientists control chemical reactions of ultracold molecules
11. NFCR Scientists Discover Brain Tumor's “Escape Path”
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
NIST scientists address 'wrinkles' in transparent film development
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017 The Global Microfluidic Chips ... is a specialized and comprehensive study on the existing state of ... , Europe and Asia-Pacific ... East and Africa . ... Browse 172 Tables and Figures, ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... California (PRWEB) , ... March 28, 2017 , ... ... its flagship product, AllegroGraph , has been named a ‘Champion’ by Bloor Research ... is the highest ranked product in its class, and, thanks to Gruff, it was ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... 2017 Summary This report provides ... and its partnering interests and activities since 2010. Description ... in-depth insight into the partnering activity of one of the ... reports are prepared upon purchase to ensure inclusion of the ... The report will be delivered in PDF format within 1 ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... 2017  Viking Therapeutics, Inc. ("Viking") (NASDAQ: VKTX), a ... therapies for metabolic and endocrine disorders, today announced that ... will deliver a corporate presentation at H.C. Wainwright & ... held April 3, 2017 at the St. Regis Hotel ... presentation are as follows: H.C. ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:3/13/2017)... Future of security: Biometric Face Matching software  ... ... Matching enables to match face pictures against each other or against large databases. ... Systems) ... the fastest software for biometric Face Matching on the market. The speed is ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... , March 7, 2017   HireVue , the ... global companies identify the best talent, faster, today announced ... Sales Officer (CSO) and Diana Kucer as ... out a seasoned executive team poised to drive continued growth ... on a year of record bookings in 2017. ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... 2017 Who risk to be deprived of ... full report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4313699/ WILL APPLE AND ... Fingerprint sensors using capacitive technology represent a fast ... Idex forecasts an increase of 360% of the number ... the fingerprint sensor market between 2014 and 2017 (source ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):