Wearable screens: Stretchy plastic is twice as bright as smartphone displays

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Existing flexible screens are either too power-hungry, fragile or expensive to be used in most electronic devices, but a new material could enable more practical versions



Technology



23 March 2022

Zhitao Zhang wears the flexible light-emitting film, featuring a Stanford logo.

The flexible, light-emitting film stuck to the skin, showing a Stanford University logo

Zhitao Zhang and Jiancheng Lai, Bao Group Research Lab

An elastic light-emitting polymer that glows like a filament in a light bulb could lead to affordable, practical and robust flexible screens.

Flexible screens could form part of wearable computers that stick to our skin and do away with the need to carry a separate smartphone or laptop. But the various existing flexible displays all have flaws: they either require high voltages to run, are too fragile, too expensive, not bendy enough or lack brightness.

Zhenan Bao

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