Washington D.C. [USA], Mar 18 (ANI): A new research has described a way to make flexible temporary electronic displays, which would likely be discarded after a single use and prove to be environmentally friendly.
In order to make such devices, the scientists proposed in their study -- which got published in ACS Nano - the use of a plentiful and biodegradable resource: fish scales.
Flexible temporary electronic displays may one day make it possible to sport a working screen directly on the skin. In its current form, however, this technology generally depends on plastic.
Within such displays, electricity-conducting and light-emitting components are layered onto a transparent film. To make them flexible enough to withstand the bending required to stay on the skin or other soft surfaces, researchers have so far relied on films made of plastic -- a substance derived from fossil fuels, a limited resource and a source of pollution.
Hai-Dong Yu, Juqing Liu, Wei Huang and colleagues wanted to find a more sustainable and environmentally friendly material for the film. They settled on gelatin derived from collagen in fish scales, which are usually thrown away.
After preparing a gelatin solution from the fish scales, they poured it into a petri dish that acted as a mould for the film as it dried. In tests, they found the film had the attributes, including flexibility and transparency, needed for use in wearable devices.
The film also dissolved within seconds in hot water and could then be recycled into a new film. Also, when buried in soil, it degraded within 24 days.
The team used the film to build a working alternating current electroluminescent device that continued to glow even after being bent and relaxed 1,000 times.
The experts hence concluded that films derived from fish scales are a promising alternative for more sustainable flexible electronics, including wearables and folding displays. (ANI)