A New Class of Electronic Devices Based on Flexible Porous Substrates

Yiyuan Zhang, Tengyuan Zhang, Zhandong Huang, Jun Yang

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


With the advent of the Internet of Things era, the connection between electronic devices and humans is getting closer and closer. New-concept electronic devices including e-skins, nanogenerators, brain–machine interfaces, and implantable medical devices, can work on or inside human bodies, calling for wearing comfort, super flexibility, biodegradability, and stability under complex deformations. However, conventional electronics based on metal and plastic substrates cannot effectively meet these new application requirements. Therefore, a series of advanced electronic devices based on flexible porous substrates (e.g., paper, fabric, electrospun nanofibers, wood, and elastic polymer sponge) is being developed to address these challenges by virtue of their superior biocompatibility, breathability, deformability, and robustness. The porous structure of these substrates can not only improve device performance but also enable new functions, but due to their wide variety, choosing the right porous substrate is crucial for preparing high-performance electronics for specific applications. Herein, the properties of different flexible porous substrates are summarized and their basic principles of design, manufacture, and use are highlighted. Subsequently, various functionalization methods of these porous substrates are briefly introduced and compared. Then, the latest advances in flexible porous substrate-based electronics are demonstrated. Finally, the remaining challenges and future directions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2105084
JournalAdvanced Science
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 4 Mar 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • biocompatibility
  • breathability
  • deformability
  • electronic device
  • flexible porous substrate
  • pore structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)
  • General Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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