Volume 1 Issue 8, August 2018

Volume 1 Issue 8

A 3D twist on stretchable electronics

By stacking, and electrically connecting, layers of stretchable circuits, three-dimensional integrated devices can be built that are capable of wirelessly monitoring a person’s vital signs and creating human–machine interfaces. The cover shows an optical microscopy image of a four-layer stretchable device that is equipped with Bluetooth data communication capabilities and can simultaneously sense electrophysiological signals, strain, temperature, acceleration, and orientation.

See Huang et al. and News & Views by Kim et al.

Image: Sheng Xu, University of California San Diego. Cover Design: Allen Beattie.


  • Editorial |

    This year’s International Physics Olympiad — ably assisted by over 1,000 paper transistors — could help inspire the next generation of scientists, engineers and technicians.

Research Highlights

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    A theoretical analysis of the dynamics of magnetic skyrmions and antiskyrmions shows that large current-induced spin–orbit torques can lead to nonlinear trochoidal motion, which results in a sharp drop in translational velocity.

    • Seonghoon Woo
  • News & Views |

    Scalable electronic synapses fabricated using multilayer hexagonal boron nitride sheets can emulate both long- and short-term plasticity, with an ultralow standby power consumption of 1 fW.

    • Muhammad M. Hussain
    •  & Nazek El-Atab
  • News & Views |

    A memory cell design based on two memristors and one minimum-sized transistor can nullify parasitic currents, device-to-device variations and cycle-to-cycle variations in memristive crossbar arrays.

    • Dietmar Fey
  • News & Views |

    A multifunctional stretchable electronic system, which can be used to monitor vital signs and build human–machine interfaces, can be created through the vertical stacking of highly integrated layers of soft electronics.

    • Dae-Hyeong Kim
    •  & Dong Chan Kim


  • Perspective |

    This Perspective argues that electronics is poised to enter a new era of scaling – hyper-scaling – driven by advances in beyond-Boltzmann transistors, embedded non-volatile memories, monolithic three-dimensional integration, and heterogeneous integration techniques.

    • Sayeef Salahuddin
    • , Kai Ni
    •  & Suman Datta


  • Article |

    By examining the dynamics of skyrmions and antiskyrmions using a combination of atomistic spin simulations, reduced-variable modelling and machine learning algorithms, it is shown that current-induced spin–orbit torques can lead to trochoidal motion and skyrmion–antiskyrmion pair generation.

    • Ulrike Ritzmann
    • , Stephan von Malottki
    • , Joo-Von Kim
    • , Stefan Heinze
    • , Jairo Sinova
    •  & Bertrand Dupé
  • Article |

    Vertically structured electronic synapses, which exhibit both short- and long-term plasticity, can be created using layered two-dimensional hexagonal boron nitride.

    • Yuanyuan Shi
    • , Xianhu Liang
    • , Bin Yuan
    • , Victoria Chen
    • , Haitong Li
    • , Fei Hui
    • , Zhouchangwan Yu
    • , Fang Yuan
    • , Eric Pop
    • , H.-S. Philip Wong
    •  & Mario Lanza
  • Article |

    Device-to-device and cycle-to-cycle variations and leakage in memristor crossbar arrays can be alleviated with a memory cell design that uses the ratio of the resistances of two memristors to encode information, rather than the absolute resistance of a single memristor.

    • Miguel Angel Lastras-Montaño
    •  & Kwang-Ting Cheng
  • Article |

    By combining strategies in material design and advanced microfabrication, three-dimensional integrated stretchable electronic devices can be created, including an eight-channel sensing system with Bluetooth communication capabilities that can be used to extract an array of signals from the human body.

    • Zhenlong Huang
    • , Yifei Hao
    • , Yang Li
    • , Hongjie Hu
    • , Chonghe Wang
    • , Akihiro Nomoto
    • , Taisong Pan
    • , Yue Gu
    • , Yimu Chen
    • , Tianjiao Zhang
    • , Weixin Li
    • , Yusheng Lei
    • , NamHeon Kim
    • , Chunfeng Wang
    • , Lin Zhang
    • , Jeremy W. Ward
    • , Ayden Maralani
    • , Xiaoshi Li
    • , Michael F. Durstock
    • , Albert Pisano
    • , Yuan Lin
    •  & Sheng Xu

Reverse Engineering

  • Reverse Engineering |

    The discovery of the twisted nematic effect allowed liquid crystal displays to become a practical and ubiquitous technology. Martin Schadt recounts how it came about.

    • Martin Schadt