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Invited Speaker, Presenter, TRACK 1: EMERGING MATERIALS

Clara Santato

Polytechnique Montreal, Canada
Presenter Bio

Clara Santato (PhD, Geneva U, 2001), Canada Research Chair in Sustainable Organic Electronics: Materials, Processes Devices, is Professor in the Department of Engineering Physics at Polytechnique Montreal.

Dr Santato’s key achievements include: seminal work on WO3-catalysed water photoelectrolysis for hydrogen (H2) production; groundbreaking work on organic (carbon-based) electronics, specifically on Organic Thin Film Transistors. She has conducted and led research projects in both European and North American institutions (including Purdue U and Cornell U). For her research on solar energy conversion and light-emitting devices, she has been elevated, in 2016, to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Senior membership.

She demonstrated the first melanin biopigment-based supercapacitor. For this work, she was awarded the 2018 Materials Research Society (MRS) Communications Lecture Award.

Clara serves as Editor of the Journal of Power Sources and member of the Advisory Board of the Journal of Materials Chemistry C and Materials Advances (Royal Society of Chemistry) as well as NanoExpress (Institute of Physics).

Clara is the PI of a Canada-wide Collaborative Research and Training Experience in Sustainable Electronics and Eco-Design (CREATE SEED, 2020-2026) initiative, funded by NSERC, bringing together some 20 universities and industrial partners in Canada and abroad.

Abstract: Ultra-high conductivity Sepia melanin ink films for environmentally benign electronics
Melanins (from the Greek μέλας, mélas, black) are bio-pigments ubiquitous in flora and fauna. In the melanin family, eumelanin is an insoluble brown–black type, found in vertebrates and invertebrates alike, among which Sepia (cuttlefish) is noteworthy. Sepia melanin is a type of bio-sourced eumelanin that can readily be extracted from the ink sac of cuttlefish. Eumelanin features broadband optical absorption, metal-binding affinity as well as antioxidative and radical-scavenging properties. Considering its molecular features, such as electronic conjugation, eumelanin is a prototype of material for environmentally benign, biodegradable organic electronics technologies. Unfortunately, several challenges are still open in the field of eumelanin films before their successful technological exploitation. Among them, the limited solution processability of eumelanin, in turn limiting the fabrication of low embodied energy devices, and the elusive electronic transport. In this lecture, we will discuss the successful fabrication of device quality films by printing inks based on blends of Sepia Melanin and insulating polymer binders and the observation of ultra-high conductivity and exclusive electronic transport in printed films of Sepia melanin.

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