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Sci Rep. 2017 Jan 30;7:41566. doi: 10.1038/srep41566.

A robust, highly stretchable supramolecular polymer conductive hydrogel with self-healability and thermo-processability.

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School of Materials Science and Engineering, Tianjin Key Laboratory of Composite and Functional Materials, Tianjin University, Tianjin, 300350, China.
School of Chemical Science and Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, 200092, China.


Dual amide hydrogen bond crosslinked and strengthened high strength supramolecular polymer conductive hydrogels were fabricated by simply in situ doping poly (N-acryloyl glycinamide-co-2-acrylamide-2-methylpropanesulfonic) (PNAGA-PAMPS) hydrogels with PEDOT/PSS. The nonswellable conductive hydrogels in PBS demonstrated high mechanical performances-0.22-0.58 MPa tensile strength, 1.02-7.62 MPa compressive strength, and 817-1709% breaking strain. The doping of PEDOT/PSS could significantly improve the specific conductivities of the hydrogels. Cyclic heating and cooling could lead to reversible sol-gel transition and self-healability due to the dynamic breakup and reconstruction of hydrogen bonds. The mending hydrogels recovered not only the mechanical properties, but also conductivities very well. These supramolecular conductive hydrogels could be designed into arbitrary shapes with 3D printing technique, and further, printable electrode can be obtained by blending activated charcoal powder with PNAGA-PAMPS/PEDOT/PSS hydrogel under melting state. The fabricated supercapacitor via the conducting hydrogel electrodes possessed high capacitive performances. These cytocompatible conductive hydrogels have a great potential to be used as electro-active and electrical biomaterials.

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