Flexible Gold Conductor That Still Conducts Electricity

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Researchers from the University of Michigan have created an elastic gold polymer that can stretch and still have metallic properties like being able to transport electrons. The ability of the metal to maintain structure and conductivity when it is stretched could make it a valuable technology.

Researchers from the University of Michigan have created an elastic gold polymer that can stretch and still have metallic properties like being able to transport electrons.

Using gold nanoparticles and elastic polyurethane, they have made a material that doesn’t require spring or coiled shaped wires to maintain conductivity.

The ability of the metal to maintain structure and conductivity when it is stretched could make it a valuable technology.

It might be used in the future as flexible electrode implants to treat brain or heart conditions in humans.

Getting implants that fit to the moving human body is an important step for biocompatible electronics.

The nanoparticles used in the conductors were specially designed in the lab to have a thin shell surface.

Study researcher Nicholas Kotov, a professor of engineering at the University of Michigan said: “This is important because the shell stabilizes the particles and typically prevents the transfer of electrons from one nanoparticle to the other.”

The thin shelled nanoparticles in the new polymer however, align themselves when stretched out to maintain a conductive pathway.

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