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Researchers Create Transistors From Natural Cotton Fibers

By Cornell Chronicle

October 31, 2011

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Cornell University professor Juan Hinestroza was part of an international team that recently developed transistors using natural cotton fibers.

"Creating transistors from cotton fibers brings a new perspective to the seamless integration of electronics and textiles, enabling the creation of wearable electronic devices," Hinestroza says.

He says the technology lays the foundation for more complex devices, such as cotton-based circuits, which would enable fabrics to analyze body temperature, track heart rate or blood pressure, and monitor physical effort in athletes. The new technique involves conformal coatings of gold nanoparticles along with semiconductive and conductive polymers being used to tailor the electronic behavior of natural cotton fibers.

The research involved an interdisciplinary, collaborative effort between fiber scientists from Cornell, physicists from the University of Bologna, electrical engineers from the University of Cagliari, and materials scientists from the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Mines de Saint-Etienne.

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