In work that could lead to applications including multifunctional textile fabrics and all-optical computer interfaces, MIT researchers report the creation of flexible fibers and fabrics that can not only sense light, but also analyze its colors.
"These novel fiber structures offer a unique possibility for constructing an optoelectronic functional fabric because the fibers are both flexible and mechanically tough, and can thus be woven," write the researchers in the October 14 issue of Nature. "Interesting device applications follow not only from the ability to engineer the single-fiber properties, but also from the specifics of fiber arrangements into larger assemblies."
The team’s leader, Yoel Fink, notes that "the technique we developed allows us to bring together two disparate technologies: those involved in creating optical fibers and those for electronic components." The work "challenges the traditional barrier between semiconductor devices and fiber-optic processing," said Fink, the Thomas B. King Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering.
Yoel Fink | EurekAlert!
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