Conductive films that are both stretchable and flexible could have applications in electronic devices1,2, sensors3,4, actuators5 and speakers6. A substantial amount of research has been carried out on conductive polymer composites7, metal electrode-integrated rubber substrates8,9,10 and materials based on carbon nanotubes and graphene1,2,11,12,13. Here we present highly conductive, printable and stretchable hybrid composites composed of micrometre-sized silver flakes and multiwalled carbon nanotubes decorated with self-assembled silver nanoparticles. The nanotubes were used as one-dimensional, flexible and conductive scaffolds to construct effective electrical networks among the silver flakes. The nanocomposites, which included polyvinylidenefluoride copolymer, were created with a hot-rolling technique, and the maximum conductivities of the hybrid silver–nanotube composites were 5,710 S cm−1 at 0% strain and 20 S cm−1 at 140% strain, at which point the film ruptured. Three-dimensional percolation theory reveals that Poisson's ratio for the composite is a key parameter in determining how the conductivity changes upon stretching.
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This work was supported by the Basic Science Research Programme (grant no. 2009-0090017) through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), the Center for Nanoscale Mechatronics & Manufacturing (grant no. 2009K000160) which is a 21st-Century Frontier Research programme, and the World Class University programme (grant no. R31-2008-000-10029-0) funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Korea.
The authors declare no competing financial interests.
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Chun, KY., Oh, Y., Rho, J. et al. Highly conductive, printable and stretchable composite films of carbon nanotubes and silver. Nature Nanotech 5, 853–857 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2010.232
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