Grade Range
9th-12th
Group Size
3
Total Time
3 hours
Credits
TeachEngineering logo

Overview

This activity focuses on the use of graphene in organic fibers, and their applications in organic electronics, e-textiles and wearable technologies. Students learn about the properties of graphene—unique form of carbon—and how graphene-based fibers are fabricated, how to measure resistance, how to calculate resistivity, and how a material changes its electrical properties. Students also learn about the importance of defining design parameters, which is an important concept in the engineering design process. Students create graphite-based fibers using sodium alginate as the medium and a calcium coagulation bath, which is similar to the way in which graphene-based fibers are created in engineering research laboratories. Students then determine the factors that contribute to resistivity and vary these parameters to optimize fiber resistivity.

Engineering Connection

In order to design products for commercial use, engineers must be able to identify design parameters that influence the performance of their products. Like engineers, students use knowledge of resistivity and material properties to develop a procedure for producing organic fibers for future applications in organic electronics. Students will optimize their design of conductive fibers for resistivity, within constraints for length and diameter.

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Grade Range
9th-12th
Group Size
3
Total Time
3 hours
Credits
TeachEngineering logo
Free science fair projects.