Scientists have created an environmentally friendly gelatin-based film. It can recover multiple times and still maintain the electronic signals needed to access device data. The development is reported by ACS Applied Polymer Materials magazine.
Global consumer demand for portable smart devices is growing rapidly, but e-waste is also increasing due to their fragility. Screen protectors only work once, and some are made with potentially harmful substances. This limits their use for biomedical purposes. Researchers have already tried to incorporate gelatin into electronic devices because it is transparent, readily available, and safe. However, when tested, the damaged gelatinous film could not quickly recover. Then the scientists decided to create a multiply self-healing film based on gelatin, which would seal cracks in a few minutes and keep the device in working order.
The researchers mixed gelatin and glucose to create a flexible film. The experiment showed that breaks in the gelatin-glucose film disappear within three hours at room temperature and within 10 minutes when heated to 60 ° C. It should be noted that without glucose, gelatin did not repair itself under the same conditions.
This film transmits an electrical signal after several cycles of damage and repair. Experiments show that glucose and gelatin are likely to form imide bonds during reduction. The new film will preserve the durability of touch screens and flexible devices, advanced robotics, and assistive medical technologies, the researchers said.