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Flexible and Stretchable Self‐Powered Multi‐Sensors Based on the N‐Type Thermoelectric Response of Polyurethane/Naₓ(Ni‐ett)ₙ Composites

Wan, K; Taroni, PJ; Liu, Z; Liu, Y; Tu, Y; Santagiuliana, G; Hsia, I; ... Bilotti, E; + view all (2019) Flexible and Stretchable Self‐Powered Multi‐Sensors Based on the N‐Type Thermoelectric Response of Polyurethane/Naₓ(Ni‐ett)ₙ Composites. Advanced Electronic Materials , 5 (12) , Article 1900582. 10.1002/aelm.201900582. Green open access

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Abstract

Flexible and stretchable electronic devices have a broad range of potential uses, from biomedicine, soft robotics, and health monitoring to the internet‐of‐things. Unfortunately, finding a robust and reliable power source remains challenging, particularly in off‐the‐grid and maintenance‐free applications. A sought‐after development overcome this challenge is the development of autonomous, self‐powered devices. A potential solution is reported exploiting a promising n‐type thermoelectric compound, poly nickel‐ethenetetrathiolates (Na_{x}(Ni‐ett)_{n}). Highly stretchable n‐type composite films are obtained by combining Nax(Ni‐ett)n with commercial polyurethane (Lycra). As high as 50 wt% Na_{x}(Ni‐ett)_{n} content composite film can withstand deformations of ≈500% and show conductivities of ≈10^{-2} S cm^{-1} and Seebeck coefficients of approx. −40 µV K^{-1}. These novel materials can be easily synthesized on a large scale with continuous processes. When subjected to a small temperature difference (<20 °C), the films generate sufficient thermopower to be used for sensing strain (gauge factor ≈20) and visible light (sensitivity factor ≈36% (kW m^{-2})^{-1}), independent of humidity (sensitivity factor ≈0.1 (%RH)^{-1}. As a proof‐of‐concept, a wearable self‐powered sensor is demonstrated by using n‐type Na_{x}(Ni‐ett)_{n}/Lycra and PEDOT:PSS/Lycra elements, connected in series by hot pressing, without employing any metal connections, hence preserving good mechanical ductility and ease of processing.

Type: Article
Title: Flexible and Stretchable Self‐Powered Multi‐Sensors Based on the N‐Type Thermoelectric Response of Polyurethane/Naₓ(Ni‐ett)ₙ Composites
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/aelm.201900582
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1002/aelm.201900582
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: flexible electronics, stretchable electronics organic thermoelectrics, self‐powered electronics, sensors
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Chemistry
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > MAPS Faculty Office
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > MAPS Faculty Office > Institute for Materials Discovery
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10081894
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