Putting The Paper Back Into E-Paper

Scientists in Japan have developed technology that could pave the way for paper-based electronic books.

AsianScientist (May 2, 2018) – In a study published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, researchers describe how they successfully produced paper-based electrochromic (EC) displays.

EC displays rely on the movement of ions or electrons into a liquid electrolyte to create contrast. In conventional EC devices, sealing is necessary to prevent leakage of the electrolyte, and manufacturing the thin films is difficult.

A group of researchers led by Dr. Hirotaka Koga at Osaka University, Japan, has overcome these problems by using a non-volatile electrolyte attached to ordinary paper through hydrogen bonding. They then coated the entire surface with conducting polymers to create a transparent paper-based EC electrode.

Because the whole device is paper-based, it is flexible. Furthermore, the white paper electrolyte has a high optical reflectance, thereby enhancing the visibility of the resulting EC display.

Using this technology, the researchers have developed various paper-based electronic devices, such as memory circuits, transistors, antennas and supercapacitors. If these technologies are integrated, it may become possible to produce paper-based electronic books as well, they added.

The article can be found at: Koga et al. (2017) Ionic Liquid Mediated Dispersion and Support of Functional Molecules on Cellulose Fibers for Stimuli-Responsive Chromic Paper Devices.


Source: Osaka University; Photo: Pexels.
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