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Open AccessArticle

Sensitivity of Pressure Sensors Enhanced by Doping Silver Nanowires

CAS Key Laboratory of Soft Matter Chemistry, Department of Polymer Science and Engineering, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at the Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2014, 14(6), 9889-9899;
Received: 19 February 2014 / Revised: 30 April 2014 / Accepted: 19 May 2014 / Published: 4 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymeric Micro Sensors and Actuators)
We have developed a highly sensitive flexible pressure sensor based on a piezopolymer and silver nanowires (AgNWs) composite. The composite nanofiber webs are made by electrospinning mixed solutions of poly(inylidene fluoride) (PVDF) and Ag NWs in a cosolvent mixture of dimethyl formamide and acetone. The diameter of the fibers ranges from 200 nm to 500 nm, as demonstrated by SEM images. FTIR and XRD results reveal that doping Ag NWs into PVDF greatly enhances the content of β phase in PVDF. This β phase increase can be attributed to interactions between the Ag NWs and the PVDF matrix, which forces the polymer chains to be embedded into the β phase crystalline. The sensitivity of the pressure sensors agrees well with the FTIR and XRD characteristics. In our experiments, the measured sensitivity reached up to 30 pC/N for the nanofiber webs containing 1.5 wt% Ag NWs, which is close to that of poly(vinylidene fluoride-trifluoroethylene) [P(VDF-TrFE), (77/23)]. This study may provide a new method of fabricating high performance flexible sensors at relatively low cost compared with sensors based on [P(VDF-TrFE), (77/23)]. View Full-Text
Keywords: PVDF; electrospun; pressure sensor; piezoelectricity; β phase; flexible; high performance PVDF; electrospun; pressure sensor; piezoelectricity; β phase; flexible; high performance
MDPI and ACS Style

Li, B.; Xu, C.; Zheng, J.; Xu, C. Sensitivity of Pressure Sensors Enhanced by Doping Silver Nanowires. Sensors 2014, 14, 9889-9899.

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