Spray-on Transistors May Become Possible

GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 6 (UPI) — U.S. government scientists have discovered an organic semiconductor that might be a good vehicle for creating spray-on electronics.

National Institute of Standards and Technology researchers said the organic semiconductor might be used to create large-area electronics, such as solar cells and displays, which can be sprayed onto a surface as easily as paint.

While such electronics are not ready for marketing, the research team says the material could overcome one of the main cost hurdles blocking large-scale manufacture of organic thin-film transistors.

“At this stage, there is no established best material or manufacturing process for creating low-cost, large-area electronics,” Calvin Chan, a NIST electrical engineer, said. “What our team has done is to translate a classic material deposition method, spray painting, to a way of manufacturing cheap electronic devices.”

Chan says the simplicity of spray-on electronics gives it a potential cost advantage over other manufacturing processes for organic electronics. Other candidate processes, he said, require costly equipment to function or are simply not suitable for use in high-volume manufacturing.

The research is detailed in the March 30 edition of the journal Applied Physics Letters.

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Categorized | Other, Solar
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