Recent approaches in self-healable electrodes use polymers with exhibiting significantly low electrical conductivity, compared to conventional metals. Such self-healable electrodes also require external stimuli to initiate self-healing, or present slow restoration for their intrinsic healing. Herein, we introduce an instantaneous and repeatable self-healing of highly conductive, fully metallic electrodes at ambient conditions. These electrodes consist of silver and liquid metal (with no polymer), and exhibit a sufficiently high conductivity of 2 S/μm. The liquid metal (LM) component enables instantaneous and repeatable self-healing of these electrodes (within a few milliseconds) under no external energy as well as high stretchability. Additionally, the inclusion of silver in this LM improves the mechanical strength of this composite, thereby overcoming the limitation of a pristine LM that has low mechanical strength. Moreover, this composite formation can be effective in preventing the penetration of gallium atoms into different metals, while preserving electrical contact properties. Also the self-healable nature of electrodes enables their outstanding sustainability against electrical breakdown at relatively high electric fields. Furthermore, the compatibility of these self-healable electrodes with conventional photolithography and wet etching facilitates high-resolution patterning for device fabrications, as demonstrated in an example with a self-healable organic light-emitting diode display.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Ministry of Science & ICT (MSIT) and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) of Korea through the National Research Foundation (2019R1A2B5B03069358 and 2016R1A5A1009926), the Bio & Medical Technology Development Program (2018M3A9F1021649), the Nano Material Technology Development Program (2015M3A7B4050308 and 2016M3A7B4910635), and the Industrial Technology Innovation Program (10080577). Also, the authors thank financial support by the Institute for Basic Science (IBS-R026-D1) and the Research Program (2018-22-0194) funded by Yonsei University.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)