Self - Repairable Film to Revolutionize the Electronic Film Market

Posted On December 11, 2020     

Hand-held smart devices are those devices that are small in size to make it easier for them to be used by a single hand. They usually have either an LCD or OLED flat-screen interface, which provides a touch screen interface alongside physical buttons or keyboards. Several forms of these devices also have the ability to connect to the internet or interconnect with each other through Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, headsets, etc. They have numerous uses like the ability to make phone calls, video games, GPS capabilities, and the like.

Global consumer demand for such devices is rapidly increasing due to various tasks they can perform; however, these handsets are very fragile in nature. Whenever a cell phone is dropped, it may superficially crack. However, it may also happen that the device will stop working altogether as the material that stores data got fractured due to the drop. This problem has led to an increase in electronic waste.

In this regard, researchers have recently developed a gelatine-based film that can repair itself in multiplicity. At the same time, it can also maintain the electronic signals needed to access a device’s data.

Researchers tried to use gelatin in their experiments because it was transparent, safe, and easily available. Still, when tested, gelatine based film, it was not able to mend itself quickly. Researchers wanted a film that could mend itself quickly and so mixed gelatine and glucose together. To create a film, they put the mixture in between a material that is conductive in nature to stimulate an electronic device. When the tests were done, it was seen that this film could mend itself in 3 hours at room temperature and within ten minutes when warmed to 140F.

This glucose-based gelatine also had the ability to transfer an electrical signal even when it was repeatedly damaged and then repaired. This shows that glucose and gelatine form interlocking and reversible imide bonds when the healing process occurs.

Self – repairing films have been developed before this. However, most of them could be used only once, and others consisted of harmful agents that curtailed their use in biomedical applications. This breakthrough is a significant development in Electronic Films Market as it reduces electronic waste and may one day be used in smart electronics and health – monitoring devices. The film could also help in the future to maintain the durability of flexible display devices and touch screens, health technologies and advanced robotics, etc.

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