Researchers develop conductive transparent LED coating

Researchers develop conductive transparent LED coating
Researchers from the University of Michigan have developed a plastic conductive material for large touchscreens, LED light panels and window-mounted infared solar cells that features a three-layer ‘anti-reflection’ surface.

The conductive metal layer is sandwiched between two insulating materials (dielectrics) that allows light to pass through with little resistance, reducing the reflection from both the plastic and metal layer.

The dielectrics chosen were aluminium oxide and zinc oxide, with the aluminium oxide on the side closest to the light source reflecting less light back to the source than a plastic source.

The metal layer, composed of silver with a small amount of copper measures 6.5 nanometres thick, with the zinc oxide helping to guide the light into the plastic surface. Some light is reflected back where the plastic meets the air on the opposite side, but features a transmittance of 88.4%.

The team anticipates that other researchers will be able to create similar sandwich-style flexible and transparent conductors to allow more light to pass through.

Jay Guo, U-M professor electrical engineering and computer science, University of Michigan said:  “We developed a way to make coatings with high transparency and conductivity, low haze, excellent flexibility, easy fabrication and great compatibility with different surfaces.”

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