HANNOVER MESSE 2018,
23 - 27 April
For the development of transparent and flexible electrodes, INM is working with the process of electrospinning, a technique that produces ultra-fine fibers that are up to 100 times thinner than a human hair. These fibers are collected on glass or on foils in an unstructured, wide mesh net. When conductive materials are spun, flexible conductive transparent electrodes could be produced. These FTCEs have transparencies comparable to indium tin oxide with low haze less than two percent. Electrospinning relies on the electro-hydrodynamics of a polymer droplet in a strong electromagnetic field. The polymer droplet deforms into a cone under the electromagnetic field and ejects a jet of liquid polymer to reduce the charge on the droplet. Once in the air the polymer jet experiences a bending instability causing the fiber to whip through the air effectively drawing the fiber to diameters below 500 nanometers. The fibers are collected on glass or on a film in an unstructured, wide mesh net. "Our innovation lies in the choise of starting materials. We can use sols, which have to be calcined, or polymers and composites with no further heat treatment. Depending on the starting material, it is possible to produce both intrinsically conductive fibers and those which are electrically conductive in a further step via silvering," explains Peter William de Oliveira, Head of the InnovationCenter INM.The process is machine-compatible and therefore allows a very efficient path for the manufacture of such electrodes. At the InnovationCenter INM there is a spinning station with which the different needs of the interested parties can be met.
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