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Nanoengineered barrier invented to protect plastic electronics from water degradation
Date:4/29/2008

A breakthrough barrier technology from Singapore A*STARs Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) protects sensitive devices like organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) and solar cells from moisture 1000 times more effectively than any other technology available in the market, opening up new opportunities for the up-and-coming plastic electronics sector.

A team of scientists from Singapores Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) has developed a new patented film that has the highest reported water vapour barrier performance to date, as tested by the UK Centre for Process Innovation.

The tests have shown that the new film is 1,000 times more impervious to moisture than existing technologies. This means a longer lifetime for plastic electronic devices such as solar cells and flexible displays that use these high-end films but whose sensitive organic materials are easily degraded by water vapour and oxygen.

The new technology is a boon to the burgeoning plastic electronics industry that aims to deliver flexible, lightweight and cheap electronics products to consumers in ways that silicon electronics may never reach such as disposable or wraparound displays, cheap identification tags, low cost solar cells and chemical and pressure sensitive sensors.

A research institute of the Singapores Agency of Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), IMREs breakthrough technology comes as Singapore seeks to jumpstart a plastic electronics industry locally as part of the countrys long-term plan to anchor new knowledge-intensive industries in the economy.

The global plastic electronics industry is projected to grow to a market size of more than US$23 billion in the next 5 years .

The Science plugging gaps in current technologies:

The performance of devices like organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) and solar cells is sensitive to moisture because water and oxygen molecules seep
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Contact: Cathy Yarbrough
sciencematter@yahoo.com
858-243-1814
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore
Source:Eurekalert

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