Towards the T-1000: Liquid metals propel future electronics

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Towards the T-1000: Liquid metals propel future electronics

Post by Didge on Tue Aug 09, 2016 12:47 am

Science fiction is inching closer to reality with the development of revolutionary self-propelling liquid metals—a critical step towards future elastic electronics.While building a shape-shifting liquid metal T-1000 Terminator may still be far on the horizon, the pioneering work by researchers at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, is setting the foundation for moving beyond solid state electronics towards flexible and dynamically reconfigurable soft circuit systems.

Modern electronic technologies like smart phones and computers are mainly based on circuits that use solid state components, with fixed metallic tracks and semiconducting devices.But researchers dream of being able to create truly elastic electronic components—soft circuit systems that can act more like live cells, moving around autonomously and communicating with each other to form new circuits rather than being stuck in one configuration.

Liquid metals, in particular non-toxic alloys of gallium, have so far offered the most promising path for realising that dream.
As well as being incredibly malleable, any droplet of liquid metal contains a highly-conductive metallic core and an atomically thin semiconducting oxide skin—all the essentials needed for making electronic circuits.

To work out how to enable liquid metal to move autonomously, Professor Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh and his group from the School of Engineering at RMIT first immersed liquid metal droplets in water




Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2016-08-t-liquid-metals-propel-future.html#jCp
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