If you count yourself among those who love reading but haven’t yet made the switch over to ebooks because they’re nowhere close to realm books, this might be of interest to you. A team of scientists in China is currently working on creating ebooks that not only feel like real books, but carry that distinctive smell of paper too. There are hundreds of book lovers that love the smell of books as much as they love reading itself. And this new innovation is aimed at getting such people make a seamless switch over to ebooks.
The team of Chinese scientists—funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China—is currently working on the development of metal ink using small copper sheets. This ink can be used for etching a flexible electric circuit that can actually be printed on regular paper that is used worldwide. These facts were made known in a study that was recently published in the ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces journal.
In addition to just ebooks, this conductive metal ink could be used in hundreds of innovative ways in other types of bendable gadgets too, including ebooks that can be bent and read much like conventional paperback books.
The scientists have made extensive use of nanosheets of copper in order to create the conductive ink. These sheets are highly conductive without being expensive, and hence are likely to prove a feasible option in this experiment. The scientists chose silver nanoparticles to coat the copper nanosheets. This combined material was incorporated into a fountain pen, allowing scientists to draw lines and patterns of their choice on regular paper.
The scientists even proved that the ink was conductive by fixing miniature LED lights into it. These lights lit up on connecting a battery to the circuit. They also tested the flexibility of the ink by crumpling the paper up to 1000 times, despite which 80% to 90% of the ink’s conductivity was retained.