Development of mechanically gradient conductive materials for bioelectronic interfaces

FUNDING: 10 weeks (full time, 37 hrs per week, £12 per hour, £850 consumables, £500 student accommodation bursary)
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LOCATION: Sheffield, UK

Dr. Thomas Paterson, Dentistry, Sheffield

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The growing use of soft and hard bioelectronics in medical and technological fields requires the development of materials that can effectively integrate these systems. The aim is to create a mechanically gradient, electrically conductive material to link a soft, flexible bioelectronic to a traditional, rigid electronic component. The project will involve creating conductive hydrogels with properties that allow electrical conduction. The focus will then shift to developing the material with a gradient in mechanical properties, transitioning from soft and flexible to hard and robust, with electrical and mechanical properties will be tested to evaluate its performance. The project will also examine how this material interfaces with soft and hard conductive materials, assessing electrical continuity and impedance changes to ensure compatibility and functionality in bioelectronic applications. The student involved in this project will gain experience in material synthesis, characterisation techniques, and the design of bioelectronic interfaces. They will acquire skills in interdisciplinary research, combining elements of chemistry, materials science, and electronic engineering to gain insight into the development of bioelectronic devices. Students will be expected to present their findings orally at a research day in York in September 2024.