Cambrios and Heraeus have announced a new class of flexible, transparent and conductive material. Both companies already produce materials that produce such conductive layers. Heraeus is the supplier for Clevios a PEDOT:PSS organic solution, while Cambrios is the supplier of Clear Ohm silver nanowires. Both materials are already in use by customers and now they have announced plans to combine these two materials into one product called Clevios HY.
Cambrios’ silver nanowires combine good conductivity with transparency, while the Clevios PEDOT:PSS solution provides a somewhat lower conductivity with a good surface planarity, an advantage in the manufacturing process. The idea behind combining the two materials is that the resulting film will provide higher conductivity, combined with better transparency and planarity of the resulting film.
We had a chance to interview Sri Peruvemba, marketing officer of Cambrios about this new endeavor.
He stated that the new combination of materials offers advantages that the separate materials cannot achieve by themselves. The material will be announced by Heraeus at the LOPEC 2015 in Munich, Germany. As the announcement shows, the company is aiming to provide a unique solution for touch screens, OLED lighting, photovoltaics, smart windows and flexible displays.
From a business perspective, Heraeus will be responsible for selling the combined material and also provide application support for potential customers. However, the business model remains as it is today as the new material will be sold as material only, with the application remaining in the hands of the customer. While samples have been created, the material is not available for mass production just yet.
So far the companies have worked with PET as a substrate and state that the application of the material is a one step process and can be achieved by low cost application processes including spray coating and printing. They have achieved less than 10 ohms/sq but are also making a 97 ohms/sq product that can replace ITO in touch applications. The material is developed for thin PET substrates but could also be used on other flexible substrates. The transmission loss caused by the material is about 2.6%. While the flexibility is still under investigation, the cost of the solution will be very competitive with other solutions and should be able to address consumer products. – NH