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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X


VAN DEN BERG, C.B. et al. Structural and electrical characteristics of printed silver and palladium nanoparticle networks. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2014, vol.114, n.2, pp.145-149. ISSN 2411-9717.

In this study, silver and palladium nanoparticulate inks with different metal-binder ratios were screen-printed onto a paper substrate. The printed layers comprised the metal nanoparticles and an ethyl cellulose binder. The layers are not typical metal composites due to the low concentration of binder and high porosity. The electrical sheet resistivity of each particle concentration was measured, and the data fitted using the scaling law of percolation theory and the general effective media (GEM) equation. The percolation parameters, i.e. the percolation threshold and the critical exponent, for each system were determined from the fits and compared. The percolation threshold for the palladium layer (39.8 wt%) was lower than that found for the silver layer (44.9 wt%). The critical exponents determined for the palladium and silver layers were both lower than the universal value for three-dimensional percolation systems. Microscopy observations indicate that the difference in the percolation threshold for the two layers can be attributed to variations in their microstructure.

Keywords : printed electronics; nanotechnology; nanoparticulate inks; silver; palladium.

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