Permeable superelastic liquid-metal fibre mat enables biocompatible and monolithic stretchable electronics

Zhijun Ma, Qiyao Huang, Qi Xu, Qiuna Zhuang, Xin Zhao, Yuhe Yang, Hua Qiu, Zhilu Yang, Cong Wang, Yang Chai, Zijian Zheng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Stretchable electronics find widespread uses in a variety of applications such as wearable electronics, on-skin electronics, soft robotics and bioelectronics. Stretchable electronic devices conventionally built with elastomeric thin films show a lack of permeability, which not only impedes wearing comfort and creates skin inflammation over long-term wearing but also limits the design form factors of device integration in the vertical direction. Here, we report a stretchable conductor that is fabricated by simply coating or printing liquid metal onto an electrospun elastomeric fibre mat. We call this stretchable conductor a liquid-metal fibre mat. Liquid metal hanging among the elastomeric fibres self-organizes into a laterally mesh-like and vertically buckled structure, which offers simultaneously high permeability, stretchability, conductivity and electrical stability. Furthermore, the liquid-metal fibre mat shows good biocompatibility and smart adaptiveness to omnidirectional stretching over 1,800% strain. We demonstrate the use of a liquid-metal fibre mat as a building block to realize highly permeable, multifunctional monolithic stretchable electronics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)859-868
Number of pages10
JournalNature Materials
Volume20
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

Cite this