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ACS Nano. 2009 Nov 24;3(11):3537-42. doi: 10.1021/nn901239z.

Transparent conductive coatings by printing coffee ring arrays obtained at room temperature.

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1
Casali Institute of Applied Chemistry, Institute of Chemistry.

Abstract

We report here a concept for utilization of the "coffee ring effect" and inkjet printing to obtain transparent conductive patterns, which can replace the widely used transparent conductive oxides, such as ITO. The transparent conductive coating is achieved by forming a 2-D array of interconnected metallic rings. The rim of the individual rings is less than 10 microm in width and less than 300 nm in height, surrounding a "hole" with a diameter of about 150 microm; therefore the whole array of the interconnected rings is almost invisible to the naked eye. The rims of the rings are composed of self-assembled, closely packed silver nanoparticles, which make the individual rings and the resulting array electrically conductive. The resulting arrays of rings have a transparency of 95%; resistivity of 0.5 cm(2) was 4 +/- 0.5 Omega/, which is better than conventional ITO transparent thin films. The silver rings and arrays are fabricated by a very simple, low cost process, based on inkjet printing of a dispersion of 0.5 wt % silver nanoparticles (approximately 20 nm diameter) on plastic substrates. The performance of this transparent conductive coating was demonstrated by using it as an electrode for a plastic electroluminescent device, demonstrating the applicability of this concept in plastics electronics. It is expected that such transparent conductive coatings can be used in a wide range of applications such as displays (LCD, plasma, touch screens, e-paper), lighting devices (electroluminescence, OLED), and solar cells.

PMID:
19928933
DOI:
10.1021/nn901239z
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