Researchers show that stretching can change the electronic properties of graphene

A research team led by the University of Basel has found that the electronic properties of graphene can be specifically modified by stretching the material evenly.

The researchers, led by Professor Christian Schönenberger at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute and the Department of Physics at the University of Basel, have studied how the material’s electronic properties can be manipulated by mechanical stretching. In order to do this, they developed a kind of rack by which they stretch the atomically thin graphene layer in a controlled manner, while measuring its electronic properties.

Cardea Bio partners with Scentian Bio to create a bio-electronic tongue/nose platform

Cardea Bio, a biotech company integrating molecular biology with semiconductor electronics, has signed a commercial partnership with Scentian Bio. Scentian is an expert in synthetic insect odorant receptors (iORs), one of nature’s ways of detecting and interpreting smells.

The partnership will enable Scentian to use a customized Cardean chipset, built with graphene-based biology-gated transistors, which will allow Scentian to manufacture a bio-electronic tongue/nose tech platform.

Researchers design atomically precise graphene nanoribbon heterojunction sensor

An international research team, led by the University of Cologne, has succeeded in connecting several atomically precise graphene nanoribbons to form complex structures. The scientists have synthesized and spectroscopically characterized nanoribbon heterojunctions, and were able to integrate the heterojunctions into an electronic component. In this way, they have created a novel sensor that is highly sensitive to atoms and molecules.

"The graphene nanoribbon heterojunctions used to make the sensor are each seven and fourteen carbon atoms wide and about 50 nanometres long. What makes them special is that their edges are free of defects. This is why they are called "atomically precise" nanoribbons," explained Dr. Boris Senkovskiy from the Institute for Experimental Physics. The researchers connected several of these nanoribbon heterojunctions at their short ends, thus creating more complex heterostructures that act as tunneling barriers.

Rice team modifies laser-induced graphene process to create micron-scale patterns in photoresist

A Rice University team has modified its laser-induced graphene technique to make high-resolution, micron-scale patterns of the conductive material for consumer electronics and other applications. Laser-induced graphene (LIG), introduced in 2014 by Rice chemist James Tour, involves burning away everything except carbon from polymers or other materials, leaving the carbon atoms to reconfigure themselves into films of characteristic hexagonal graphene. The process employs a commercial laser that “writes” graphene patterns into surfaces that to date have included wood, paper and even food.

Rice lab uses laser-induced graphene process to create micron-scale patterns in photoresist image

The new version writes fine patterns of graphene into photoresist polymers, light-sensitive materials used in photolithography and photoengraving. Baking the film increases its carbon content, and subsequent lasing solidifies the robust graphene pattern, after which unlased photoresist is washed away.

Duke team creates fully recyclable printed electronics

Researchers at Duke University have created transistors with three carbon-based inks. The all-carbon thin-film transistors were made using crystalline nanocellulose as a dielectric, carbon nanotubes as a semiconductor, graphene as a conductor and paper as a substrate. This type of component could assist in addressing the environmental problem of accumulation of electronics that are non-recyclable.

“Silicon-based computer components are probably never going away and we don’t expect easily recyclable electronics like ours to replace the technology and devices that are already widely used,” said Professor Aaron Franklin, an electrical engineer at Duke University. “But we hope that by creating new, fully recyclable, easily printed electronics and showing what they can do, that they might become widely used in future applications.”