Flexible microdevices based on carbon nanotubes

Ashanté Allen, Andrew Cannon, Jungchul Lee, William P. King, Samuel Graham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This work reports the fabrication and testing of flexible carbon nanotube microdevices made using hot embossing material transfer. Both micro-plasma and photodetector devices were made using as-grown unpurified multi-wall carbon nanotubes printed on PMMA substrates. Optical detectors were fabricated by attaching metal wires and monitoring the resistance as a function of light exposure. The electrical resistance of the nanotubes showed a strong sensitivity to light exposure which was also enhanced by heating the devices. While such processes in MWCNTs are not fully understood, the addition of thermal energy is believed to generate additional free charge carriers in the nanotubes. The plasma-generating microdevices consisted of a thin layer of thermoplastic polymer having the CNT electrode on one side and a metal electrode on the reverse side. The devices were electrically tested under atmospheric conditions with 0.01-1 kV ac and at 2.5 kHz, with the plasma igniting near 0.7 kV. The fabrication of these flexible organic devices demonstrates the ability to pattern useful carbon nanotube microdevices in low-cost thermoplastic polymers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number027
Pages (from-to)2722-2729
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Micromechanics and Microengineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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