Within two to five years your cell phone and electronic tablet may very well be bendable. Maybe even foldable.
One naturally occurring material that may enable bendable screens is graphene. Graphene is an atomic-scale honeycomb lattice made of carbon atoms. Graphene has amazing properties. It is the thinnest object and lightest material in the world. At 300 times the strength of steel, graphene is the world’s strongest material.
Graphene is a transparent conductive film that can conduct electricity much better than copper. These graphene films can be bent into different shapes with no change on the graphene properties. Graphene can be produced in huge sheets which should lead to economies of scale.
While metallic nanowires may challenge graphene in delivering bendable screens, metallic nanowires have a major deficiency compared to graphene. Graphene is 97.7% transparent and its 2-D crystalline structure means that there is little or no haze and thus no impedance when reading off of graphene screens. On the other hand, nanowires have a haze issue because when light passes through the nanowires, it scatters, resulting in perceived fuzziness of the characters on the screen and loss of light intensity.
A promising pioneer in the commercialization of graphene is Graphene Frontiers. Graphene Frontiers is championing a patent-pending commercial scale continuous graphene production technology that has its genesis at the University of Pennsylvania. Graphene Frontiers is optimistic that its graphene screens will be immune from breaking or cracking and can achieve price parity with rigid cell phone and electronic tablet screens.Bendable Electronic Screens,