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Graphene And Silly Putty Together Make Super Sensor.

Silly Putty is not just a kids' toy, especially if you add graphene to it. The material is already a very soft plastic, and behaves like both a liquid and a solid, and when mixed with the conductive atom-thick sheet form of carbon, the compound becomes a super-sensitive sensor that can track your heart rate through your skin and can even detect a spider's tiny footsteps.

Researchers from Trinity College, Dublin, discovered that the electrical resistance of G-putty - the name they gave to Silly Putty infused with graphene - was extremely sensitive to even minimal deformations and pressures, "hundreds of times more sensitive than normal sensors."

Jonathan Coleman, who led the research, said in ( a statement : "When we added the graphene to the silly putty, it caused it to conduct electricity, but in a very unusual way. The electrical resistance of the G-putty was very sensitive to deformation with the resistance increasing sharply on even the slightest strain or impact. Unusually, the resistance slowly returned close to its original value as the putty self-healed over time."

The sensitive property of the material has many possible applications, especially for a wide range of medical devices. For instance, Coleman said it could be used to measure blood pressure continuously with ease, a process which is quite complicated with current technology.

A study detailing the research on G-putty and  its findings was published Friday in the journal ( Science under the title "Sensitive electromechanical sensors using viscoelastic graphene-polymer nanocomposites."

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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Date:Dec 9, 2016
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