Leuven, Belgium -Â A group of scientists and engineeers have developed 'stretchy' electronic systems that can be used in biomedical and textile applications.
Metallic conductors are ill-adapted to gross deformations, but some applications in the textile and biomedical fields require electronic systems to be repeatedly distorted as a user's body moves, walks and bends. Engineers at a lab in the university of Ghent developed a system in which gold wires are pre-bent into horseshoe-shaped springs and encased in ultra-flexible silicone rubber. The rubber expertise was provided by staff from Freudenberg Forschungsdienste KG, of Weinheim, Germany. The lab is associated with Leuven, Belgium-based company, IMEC-MCP/MODL
To realise elastic electronics, the integrated electronics require all connections between components to stretch like rubber bands while maintaining their conductivity. â€œIt acts a bit like a spring,â€ said noted Philip Pieters, business development director at IMEC. â€œThere's also built-in redundancy if it does break.â€
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Presentation from IMECS