Graphene, often claimed as the material which will replace semiconductors in the electronics and possibly save the infamous Moore’s Law. Now, according to new research published in journal “Advanced Functional Materials” may also be able to replace the smartphone screens with cheaper alternative.
Most of today’s smartphone screens are made by the byproduct of Zinc mining, Indium Tin Oxide(ITO). ITO is expensive and also many times scarce product, on the other hand Graphene will be relatively easy to manufacture as soon as the research to mass produce is discovered.
Researchers from the University of Surrey and AMBER, the materials science centre based at Trinity College Dublin have now demonstrated how graphene-treated nanowires can be used to produce flexible touchscreens at a fraction of the current cost.
Dr Alan Dalton from University of Surrey:
The growing market in devices such as wearable technology and bendable smart displays poses a challenge to manufacturers. They want to offer consumers flexible, touchscreen technology but at an affordable and realistic price. At the moment, this market is severely limited in the materials to hand, which are both very expensive to make and designed for rigid, flat devices
Lead author of the article Dr Izabela Jurewicz quoted:
Our work has cut the amount of expensive nanowires required to build such touchscreens by more than fifty times as well as simplifying the production process. We achieved this using graphene, a material that can conduct electricity and interpret touch commands whilst still being transparent.
Professor Jonathan Coleman from AMBER commented:
This is a real alternative to ITO displays and could replace existing touchscreen technologies in electronic devices. Even though this material is cheaper and easier to produce, it does not compromise on performance. We are currently working with industrial partners to implement this research into future devices and it is clear that the benefits will soon be felt by manufacturers and consumers alike.