KIT - Campus Süd
Institute of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics
Group Applied Mechanics
Buildg. 50.31, Room 219
D - 76131 Karlsruhe
Flexible electronics are attracting wide attention due to their potential applications in next-generation wearables, humanoid robots, and the ‘Internet of Things’. Electronic skin (E-skin) is a representative flexible electronic integrated with different kinds of sensors, which can transduce external stimuli (temperature, strain, humidity, light, magnetic field, and pressure) to electronic signals. E-skin is potentially useful in the fabrication of human-machine interfacing devices, remote real-time health monitoring, implantable prosthetics, and multifunctional smart skins. In order to obtain high-performance E-skin, the adopted functional materials and their arranged microstructures are crucial.
Carbon nanomaterials are a research hotspot of nanotechnology. From 0 dimensional (0D) to 3 dimensional (3D), carbon nanomaterials own various morphology, which can be assembled into diverse architectures further. Besides, carbon nanomaterials have many advantages such as good electrical conductivity, intrinsic and structural flexibility, light weight, high chemical and thermal stability, ease of chemical functionalization, enabling them to be promising candidate materials for flexible and wearable electronics.
Our research aims to find a universal strategy or platform for fabricating different sensors/E-skin with carbon nanomaterials directly. Changing the distribution and arranged microstructures of functional materials may be a feasible way. Tuning the rheology of soft substrate during the 3D printing process and supplying regional high temperature by laser scribing can make it. We believe the rapid fabrication of E-skin by using carbon materials and soft polymers will promote the development of flexible electronics.