Slash
New Electronics Dissolve When No Longer Needed [Video]

Instead of adding to landfill waste, devices could be dipped in water to make them disappear.

Ross Brooks
Ross Brooks on July 19, 2013. @greenidealism

Born To Die is an exciting new concept that aims to design technology that will dissolve at the end of its lifespan. Researchers are envisioning a future where your smartphone or tablet can dissolve once it no longer serves a purpose.

This innovative new idea is the result of a research project at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign that is trying to create “transient technology” – devices and electronics that can dissolve in water.

born-to-die-transient-technology

While the team still has a long way to go, they have managed to design a chip built on a thin film of silk that dissolves when sprayed with water.

Apart from the problems that would occur if your dropped your phone in a puddle, there is also the issue of heavy metals and other chemicals making their way into the soil and groundwater – something that may just replace landfill pile up with a slightly different problem.

Here’s a video that demonstrates the team’s progress so far:

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Thinking...