Apr 26, 2012Science and Technology
Self-assembly of flexible organic wires

Conducting organic molecules allow for the creation of flexible electronic devices such as soar cells and thin-film transistors. The problem is that the wiring between these electrical elements is typically made of metal and therefore much more brittle than the organic components. French researchers led by Nicolas Giuseppone, chemistry professor at the University of Strasbourg, demonstrate the self-assembly of organic molecules into conducting nanowires. These organic nanowires offer the same flexibility as carbon nanotubes and similar high conductivity, but are significantly cheaper and easier to manufacture. Their process described involves submerging two electrodes 80nm apart in a solution of tryarylamine, the molecules that will make up the nanowires. They then apply an electric field and shine light on the electrodes, and the molecules self-assemble into a material somewhere between a crystal and a plastic.

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