SCIENCE & TECH

Breakthrough could launch organic electronics beyond cellphone screens

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A discovery by an international team of researchers from Princeton University, the Georgia Institute of Technology and Humboldt University in Berlin points the way to more widespread use of an advanced technology generally known as organic electronics. The researchers describe a new approach for greatly increasing the conductivity of organic semiconductors, which are formed of carbon-based molecules rather than silicon atoms. Organic semiconductors are a class of materials prized for their applications in emerging technologies such as flexible electronics, solar energy conversion and high-quality color displays for smartphones and televisions. Semiconductors, typically made of silicon, are the foundation of modern electronics because engineers can take advantage of their unique properties to control electrical currents. Among many applications, semiconductor devices are used for computing, signal amplification and switching. They are used in energy-saving devices, such as light-emitting diodes and devices that convert energy such as solar cells.

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