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Title: Measurements of conductive film
Authors: Samano, Anthony
Advisors: Xu, Y
Harrison, D
Keywords: AC impedance;Thermal imaging;Lifetime performance;Defect detection;Third harmonic testing
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Brunel University London
Abstract: Printed electronics is a combination of electronics and printing technologies commonly used in the publication industry such as screen, inkjet, and roll to roll printing. The measurements of conductive film particularly the conductive paste is the main objective of this thesis. The conductive paste consists of conductive filler, adhesive and solvent. Each component affects the electrical, and mechanical properties of the finished conductive film product. The measurements of conductive film have three field of study. The first category is the lifetime performance measurement of conductive film using environmental testing. A screen printed carbon, silver and a developmental paste were categorised to environmental testing and third harmonic measurement. The second category is the measurement AC Impedance and DC resistance of conductive ink during cure. During the curing of the pastes, the AC impedance and DC resistance were monitored. A LabVIEW program was developed to control the AC impedance analyser, DC resistance ohmmeter, and convection oven. Samples were measured whilst curing at different curing temperatures and for a range of particle loadings. Particle loading is the percentage of conductive filler against the rest of the chemical in the conductive paste. The last category was defect detection using the combination of electromechanical testing, a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and an Infrared (IR) imaging technique. Printed carbon and silver were mechanically aged by bending the printed structure up to 100 k times. The results from the lifetime performance measurements on carbon, silver and the developmental paste showed the polymer resin behaviour in high humidity and high temperature environments. The increased oxidation rate due to the elevated temperatures affected the conductive particle of certain pastes. The third harmonic testing technique was able to detect failures on conductive film in the form of width reduction. The AC impedance measurement technique could indicate the final resistivity value. The AC impedance measurement was affected by the test frequency used while the ink is in liquid state. Correct test frequency setting will have less noise and less impedance value, vital in predicting the final cured resistance of the printed paste. The curing temperature affects the final cured resistance value while the particle loading affects the rate of curing of conductive film. The electrical measurement on mechanically aged samples showed that the carbon prints have its resistance readings below its initial value while the silver prints resistance increased. SEM images shows that the carbon print indicates no visual damage on the surface after 100 k bent cycle, while physical defects were observed in silver prints. The infrared measurements on carbon prints showed an increase in temperature while developments of heat patches were observed on silver prints. Difference in emissivity values of materials used provided the contrast effect which plays an important role in detecting defect using infrared imaging technique because. Third harmonic application to the printed electronics is new to this field. Normally, testing is done using environmental testing to determine the lifetime performance of the conductive film. This is effective however requires a lot of time and effort to produce a result. AC Impedance is used widely and the application can be seen on cured printed electronics. The application and measurement of AC impedance during cure and DC resistance measurement has indicated initial resistivity values. The measurement has further the effect of using AC impedance on different curing temperature and particle loading. The phase measurement as well has brought insight of degree of curing. The application of infra-red imaging technique to the mechanically aged device has produced a result that DC resistance and SEM imaging failed to detect. Normally DC resistance measurement was used as quality assessment tool but test shows on mechanically aged product failed to detect increase in resistance due to mechanical aging techqnique.
Description: This thesis was submitted for the award of Doctor of Philosophy and was awarded by Brunel University London
Appears in Collections:Design
Brunel Design School Theses

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