Specialty Fabrics Review April 2022 - 19

RIKEN announces ultra-thin
electronics breakthrough
R
esearchers at the RIKEN Center for Emergent
Matter Science (CEMS) and the RIKEN Cluster
for Pioneering Research (CPR) in Japan have
developed a technique to improve the flexibility
of ultra-thin electronics, such as those used in
bendable devices or clothing.
According to a RIKEN press release, as electronic
These images are from the conformability
test on a curved surface (radius: 0.5 mm).
Ultra-thin films bonded using (top) watervapor
plasma assisted bonding or (bottom)
standard adhesive. Conformability was
much better for water-vapor plasma
assisted bonding. Photos: RIKEN
devices get progressively smaller, and the desire to
have bendable, wearable and on-skin electronics
increases, conventional methods of constructing
them have become impractical. One problem is how
to connect and integrate multiple devices or pieces
of a device that each reside on separate ultra-thin
polymer films. Some conventional methods can
be damaging to super-thin electronics, and others
require perfectly smooth and clean surfaces.
The method developed at RIKEN CEMS/CPR
does not use adhesives, high temperature or
high pressure, and it doesn't require smooth or clean surfaces. The new
technique, called water vapor plasma-assisted bonding, creates stable bonds
between gold electrodes that are printed into ultra-thin-2 thousandths of a
millimeter-polymer sheets using a thermal evaporator.
" We expect this new method to become a flexible wiring and mounting
technology for next-generation wearable electronics that can be attached to
clothes and skin, " says Fukuda. " The next step is to develop this technology
for use with cheaper metals, such as copper or aluminum. "
The study was published in Science Advances in 2021.
Smart collar monitors dog's
health and location
F
rench tech company Invoxia has unveiled
a biometric health collar that can
monitor a dog's vitals, activity and location.
With a long battery life and precision
GPS tracking, the owner of a dog with an
existing health condition, especially, will
appreciate the collar's special features. The
collar's lightweight, low-power sensors are
enhanced with deep neural networks for accurate analysis, and could, in fact,
help to detect diseases early by noting abnormal behavior or concerning vitals,
including resting heart and respiratory rate, activity and even sleep. If the
dog runs away, gets lost or is stolen, the owner can activate " Lost Mode " and
boost the update frequency and accuracy of the collar's GPS. The product is
scheduled to be released in summer 2022. Photo: Invoxia
Knitting glass
produces " soft silica "
C
anadian designer Sarah
Roseman has unveiled a
new material that challenges
definitions of glass and textiles.
Designboom.com reports that
Roseman began her research
experimenting with knitting glass
fibers, working to find innovative
and sustainable industry
alternatives in materials. The
result is a material called " soft
silica, " that can be formed into
an ever-growing list of samples
and possible applications for the
hybrid material. The process
begins by melting fiberglass in a
kiln. Once it reaches a soft state,
the designer can manipulate the
glass and knit it into complex
shapes. The project currently
shows glass tapestries and
vessels that combine the tactility
of textile with the vibrance of
glass. Another direction of the
research focuses on integrating
copper wire inside the glass
and allowing electricity to flow
through it to power light sources.
Photo: Sarah Roseman
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Specialty Fabrics Review April 2022

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