Inkjet printing of conductive polymer nanowire network on flexible substrates and its application in chemical sensing

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This work reports an inkjet printing technique for patterning a conducting polymer nanowire network on a flexible film for applications in chemical sensing. The novelty of this work is in the patterning capability of polymer nanowires to form a conducting path. Polyaniline nanowires were chemically synthesized in an aqueous solution and a surfactant was added to lower the surface tension which enabled the printing of the nanowires using a commercially available inkjet printer. The nanowire network-based patterns were printed on a flexible transparency film, and its morphology characterization, patterning ability as well as the electrical properties were investigated. Finally, as a proof-of-concept, a fully-printed chemical sensors were developed by using the proposed printing technique on flexible films. Two types of sensors were fabricated: a pH sensor and a hydrogen peroxide sensor. The results demonstrate that the developed sensors can be utilized as a low cost, disposable, and easily printable chemical sensors. The proposed technology may find applications in the development of a simple print-and-use biochemical sensing kit for potential use in point-of-care diagnostics.

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Microelectronic Engineering

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