Panasonic Corporation developed a soft, flexible, and stretchable polymer resin film using its proprietary stretchable resin technology. The newly developed material enables the construction of soft and stretchable electronic devices such as those developed for clothing or worn on the body. It is deployable in a broad range of applications, from wearable devices to sensors, displays and robots.
This newly developed material is an insulating film material that is said to stretch and return to its original shape, a feature that is hard to find in conventional flexible materials. It adapts to desired manners of folding and to varying free-form surfaces, substantially reducing existing design constraints. The company is also said to provide a transparent electrode material and conductive paste along with this insulating film.
Devices implemented on clothing or worn on the body should be made of materials that withstand repeated use and allow no change in mechanical properties even after repeated deformation (stretch and restore). Generally, materials subjected to repeated stretch and restore would tend to degrade in mechanical strength and recovery performance.
Going beyond simple softening, Panasonic employed a unique resin design technology that makes optimal use of the characteristic three-dimensional cross-linked structure of thermosetting resin. By relaxing internal stresses arising from stretch, the newly developed insulating material returns to its original shape and withstands repeated use. This material helps realize electronic devices that remain wearable for an extended period of time.