Europe punts €5m on organic semiconductors

June 19, 2016 // By Peter Clarke
Flexible and printable electronics made using carbon-based materials offer numerous application possibilities and therefore the European Union is prepared to fund in its entirety a four-year project with €5 million.

The potential applications include wearable electronics, flexible displays and medical systems. EXTMOS (EXTended Model of Organic Semiconductors), is a €5 million pan-European collaborative research project led by the University of Bath, will help develop organic semiconductor materials and additives that can be printed onto flexible film to create devices that are low cost, flexible, wearable and lightweight.

The objective of EXTMOS is to create a materials model that will focus on charge-transport in doped organic semiconductors. For OLEDs, dopants should not absorb visible light that lowers output nor ultraviolet light that can cause degradation. The intention is to improve understanding of these materials and narrow down the universe of possibilities for material systems.

This should in turn reduce the time to market producing multilayer organic light emitting devices (OLEDs) with predictable efficiencies and long lifetimes and producing organic thin film transistors and circuits with fast operation. The group also expects to reduce the cost of design at the circuit level through an integrated model linking molecular design to circuit operation.

Project leader Professor Alison Walker, from the University of Bath’s Department of Physics, explained: "Currently the process of developing and testing of new materials is very time-consuming because of the high number or permutations of structure open to organic chemists.  This project aims to develop the tools to enhance decision-making concerning which materials are synthesised for a given target device performance."

EXTMOS was scheduled to begin on July 1, 2015 and it runs until July 1, 2019.

There are eight academic partners: the universities of Bath, Mons, Bologna, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, the research institutes of Nanosciences et Cryogénie of the CEA organization and the Institut Néel in Grenoble, the Max Planck Institut für Polymerforschung, Mainz and Imec, Leuven along with 4 industrial partners: Novaled, Silvaco Europe, Nanomatch and Cambridge Display Technology Ltd. US advisors are Antoine Kahn, Princeton, Roland Faller, UC Davis, Ana Claudia Arias, UC Berkeley.

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