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3d-printed liquid metal brings stretchable gadgets closer

by:Tuowei     2019-09-07
After researchers have made liquid metal structures on 3D printers, stretchable electronics may begin to appear in the near future.
A research team at North Carolina State University used alloys of two metals.
GA, in
It is liquid at room temperature, but it forms a \"skin\" when exposed to air \".
When printing, the shape can be stretched without reverting to the spot.
This technology can be used in micro
Circuit and wearable electronics.
The technology is detailed in the Journal of Advanced Materials.
\"The metal forms a very thin layer of oxide, and because of that, you can actually shape it into interesting shapes,\" said the lead author, it\'s impossible in a normal liquid like water, Michael Dick.
He explained that the printer used a syringe to stack the droplets together.
Without merging into a large drop, the drop holds their shape, allowing scientists to shape the metal.
\"This is an additional manufacturing technology, so you basically print the material directly in 3D space,\" said Dr. Dickey . \".
\"The resulting structures are soft, for example, if you embed them in rubber, you can create structures that can be deformed and stretchable.
\"Gadget manufacturers may use this technology to establish connections between electronic components, which will not be interrupted if their devices are pulled or distorted.
The work was \"potentially revolutionary,\" said Jason haykenfield, a professor of electrical engineering at the University of Cincinnati, who was not involved in the study.
\"People have been trying to work with liquid metal for a while --
Some of us will break the thermometer when we are young, and you will see liquid metal --mercury -
Go everywhere, \"he said.
\"There is evidence that, despite the great advantages of these materials, it is extremely challenging to use them in terms of what you can do with them.
\"With companies like Samsung, LG and Nokia trying to provide curved displays for phones and televisions, flexible electronics are starting to emerge.
But this technology is not stretching.
Dr. haykenfield says there are a few things you can accomplish when you are involved in liquid metal.
\"Stretch is another game, because what you\'re talking about now is wearable and integrated,\" he said . \".
He added that recent research has also addressed another important issue in the use of liquid metals --toxicity.
Unlike Mercury, gallium and indium alloys are safe, he said.
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