Ultra-Thin, Flexible Integrated Circuit & Sensor System

An international research team led by Professor Takao Someya of the University of Tokyo has manufactured extremely thin (2 μm) and light (3 g/m2) soft organic transistor integrated circuits (ICs) on ultra-thin polymeric films. The research team developed a novel technique to form a high-quality 19-nm-thick insulating layer on the rough surface of the 1.2-μm-thick polymeric film. The electrical properties and mechanical performance of the flexible ICs were practically unchanged (no degradation was seen) even when squeezed to a bending radius of 5 μm, dipped in physiological saline, or stretched to up to twice their original size. A major application of this flexible IC and touch sensor system is medical monitoring. "This can be attached to all sorts of surfaces and does not limit the movement of the person wearing it," says Someya.