If you are in possession of any old cell phones, you know how difficult it can be to find a proper way to dispose of them. Certain electronics retailers will accept donated devices, a family member might need a loaner and it never hurts to have a spare, but once a phone, or any other electronic device for that matter, has reached the end of its life, it could end up sitting in a dump for decades without any signs of decomposition.
Iowa State’s Reza Montazami wants to change that. According to a recent news post, a team of researchers at Iowa State is developing a technology known as “transient electronics,” materials that are “designed to quickly and completely melt away when a trigger is activated.”
Electronic devices made from specially designed degradable polymer composite materials would dissipate at a moment’s notice, eliminating unnecessary waste and protecting valuable data from thieves.
“Investigation of electronic devices based on transient materials (transient electronics) is a new and rarely addressed technology with paramount potentials in both medical and military applications,” the researchers wrote in a paper describing their work, which can be viewed here.
If detailed studies aren’t your thing, there’s also a video from Des Moines’ KCCI news station that shows some electronics dissolving. Check it out: