[Conductive Bio-silicon]

Silicon is widely used to replace plastic. Even though it is more environmentally friendly than plastic, it is still non-biodegradable. Oftentimes, instead of being properly recy-cled, they are being landfilled and it is harmful to our environment.

To turn silicon into a more sustainable material, I experimented with natural ingredients such as potato starch, arrowroot starch, agar agar, salt, and vinegar. Adjusting the ratio of different ingredients to test out different kinds of textures and future applications.

In this project, I mainly focused on exploring three categories of material property testing including thickness and stiffness, elasticity and "inflatablity," and conductivity. In my final design, I combined the most ideal recipes from all categories and created a conductive and inflatable material that could be used in daily life, for example, shoe soles or plastic wrap, and/or research-based circumstances such as expandable controllers or other kinds of fluid interfaces.

One possibility of the future application includes a customizable keyboard set that can be connected to a single circuit and turns every piece of conductive bio-silicon into instrument keyboards that play sounds or a directional keyboard that could be used to play games. The keyboard could be customized into different shapes, animals, fruits, or a light weighted "tape" that could be taped on wherever you would prefer.

#Biomaterial    #Conductive    #BioSilicone    #BioDesign
Role: Researcher

Program: Brown+RISD MA Design Engineering RISD Nature Lab

Year: 2022

Collaborators: None