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Engineers Make World's Fastest Organic Transistor, Heralding New Generation of See-Through Electronics

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Transparent transistors on a postage-stamp-sized piece of glass.

Transparent transistors on this postage-stamp-size glass have speed characteristics rivaling some forms of silicon transistors.

Credit: Jinsong Huang and Yongbo Yuan

Researchers from Stanford University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have developed the world's fastest thin-film organic transistors, which they say prove that the technology could achieve the performance needed for high-resolution TV screens and similar electronic devices.

They say the transistors can operate more than five times faster than previous examples of thin-film organic transistors.

The researchers developed a new process to make organic thin-film transistors with electronic characteristics comparable to those found in expensive, curved-screen TV displays based on a form of silicon technology. Traditionally, researchers drop a special solution, containing carbon-rich molecules and a complementary plastic, onto a spinning platter, which deposits a thin coating of the materials over the platter. In the new method, the researchers spun the platter faster, and they only coated a tiny portion of the spinning surface. The changes had the effect of depositing a denser concentration of the organic molecules into a more regular alignment, resulting in an improvement in carrier mobility, which measures how quickly electrical charges travel through the transistor.

The researchers say that further improvements to their process could lead to the development of inexpensive, high-performance electronics built on transparent substrates.

From Stanford University
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