New method can deposit nanomaterials onto flexible surfaces and 3-D objects
Printing has come a long way since the days of Johannes Gutenberg. Now, researchers have developed a new method that uses plasma to print nanomaterials onto a 3-D object or flexible surface, such as paper or cloth. The technique could make it easier and cheaper to build devices like wearable chemical and biological sensors, flexible memory devices and batteries, and integrated circuits.
One of the most common methods to deposit nanomaterials–such as a layer of nanoparticles or nanotubes–onto a surface is with an inkjet printer similar to an ordinary printer found in an office. Although they use well-established technology and are relatively cheap, inkjet printers have limitations. They can’t print on textiles or other flexible materials, let alone 3-D objects. They also must print liquid ink, and not all materials are easily made into a liquid.
Some nanomaterials can be printed using aerosol printing techniques. But the material must be heated several hundreds of degrees to consolidate into a thin and smooth film. The extra step is impossible for printing on cloth or other materials that can burn, and means higher cost for the materials that can take the heat.
The plasma method skips this heating step and works at temperatures not much warmer than 40 degrees Celsius. “You can use it to deposit things on paper, plastic, cotton, or any kind of textile,” said Meyya Meyyappan of NASA Ames Research Center. “It’s ideal for soft substrates.” It also doesn’t require the printing material to be liquid.
The researchers, from NASA Ames and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, describe their work in Applied Physics Letters, from AIP Publishing>.
They demonstrated their technique by printing a layer of carbon nanotubes on paper. They mixed the nanotubes into a plasma of helium ions, which they then blasted through a nozzle and onto paper. The plasma focuses the nanoparticles onto the paper surface, forming a consolidated layer without any need for additional heating.
The team printed two simple chemical and biological sensors. The presence of certain molecules can change the electrical resistance of the carbon nanotubes. By measuring this change, the device can identify and determine the concentration of the molecule. The researchers made a chemical sensor that detects ammonia gas and a biological sensor that detects dopamine, a molecule linked to disorders like Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.
But these were just simple proofs-of-principle, Meyyappan said. “There’s a wide range of biosensing applications.” For example, you can make sensors that monitor health biomarkers like cholesterol, or food-borne pathogens like E. coli and Salmonella.
Because the method uses a simple nozzle, it’s versatile and can be easily scaled up. For example, a system could have many nozzles like a showerhead, allowing it to print on large areas. Or, the nozzle could act like a hose, free to spray nanomaterials on the surfaces of 3-D objects.
“It can do things inkjet printing cannot do,” Meyyappan said. “But anything inkjet printing can do, it can be pretty competitive.”
The method is ready for commercialization, Meyyappan said, and should be relatively inexpensive and straightforward to develop. Right now, the researchers are designing the technique to print other kinds of materials such as copper. They can then print materials used for batteries onto thin sheets of metal such as aluminum. The sheet can then be rolled into tiny batteries for cellphones or other devices.
Learn more: Printing nanomaterials with plasma
The Latest on: Printing nanomaterials
via Google News
The Latest on: Printing nanomaterials
- NASA to 3D Print Nanomaterial-Based Detector Platform on February 19, 2019 at 11:31 am
The team will then use its Nanoscale Offset Printing System to apply the nanomaterials. Once printed, Sultana’s group will functionalize the individual sensors by depositing additional layers of nanop... […]
- Haydale Graphene targets higher sales in 2019 as it kicks off year with “cautious optimism” on February 19, 2019 at 7:42 am
3-D printing services using graphene-enhanced polylactic acid ... Haydale also operates consultancy service to help clients integrate nanomaterials into their own products. • In January 2019, the comp... […]
- NASA awards $2M to team making tiny 3D printed sensors for planetary rovers on February 18, 2019 at 5:30 am
The 3D printing system, originally developed by Ahmed Busnina and his group at Northeastern University in Boston, applies nanomaterials, layer-by-layer, onto a substrate to create tiny sensors. Sultan... […]
- Printed Microwave Metamaterial-Antenna Circuitries on Nickel Oxide Polymerized Palm Fiber Substrates on February 18, 2019 at 2:20 am
A material printer with Sliver Nanoparticles Conductive Ink (SNPCI) is used to print the antenna structure ... presented researches conducted their studies to MTM inclusions and/or nanomaterials witho... […]
- NASA to 3D print sensors, wireless circuit on a single silicon on February 17, 2019 at 5:58 pm
The 3D printing technology that Mahmooda Sultana and her team at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center are working on will simplify both the production and the packaging of these essential platforms. Usi... […]
- DOST takes lead in 3D printing research with new facility on February 11, 2019 at 6:42 pm
This facility is seen to harness, strengthen, and expand the country’s capabilities in 3D printing and advanced ... polymers, nanomaterials, and any combination of two or more of these materials ... […]
- Nanomaterials are changing the world – but we still don’t have adequate safety tests for them on February 4, 2019 at 12:49 am
Nanomaterials, as the name suggests, are very small, less than a millionth of a metre in size. They have unique physical and chemical features which give them improved properties such as greater react... […]
- Nanomaterials Promise Innovative Solutions on January 29, 2019 at 10:00 am
Nanomaterials provide a number of processing options that ... Nano-sized materials may also be applied directly by inkjet or screen printing to write conductors onto surfaces. On evaporation of the tr... […]
- Global Nanomaterials in Theranostics Market Report: Competitive Landscape, SWOT and Porter’s Five Forces Analysis on January 26, 2019 at 4:00 pm
It further breakdown data by key companies, regions, types and applications. As per this report ‘Global Nanomaterials in Theranostics Market Insights, Forecast to 2025’; Nanomaterials in Theranostics ... […]
- SmarTech’s Latest Report Analyzes Market for 3D-printed Nanometals on January 7, 2019 at 7:53 am
Leading industry analysis firm, SmarTech, has just published a report on 3D printing of nanomaterials. The new report, “Emerging Opportunities for 3D Printed Nanomaterials” contains analysis of the bu... […]
via Bing News