Current electrode designs require flexible substrates that absorb little moisture and provide large charge injection capability. Sputtered iridium oxide films have superior charge injection capabilities versus noble metals and can adhere to various substrates. Liquid crystal polymers (LCPs) have very little water absorption compared to other flexible substrates. Therefore, the combination of sputtered iridium oxide film on LCP substrate was studied using 50 Hz, 100 μs duration, and 10 mA biphasic current waveforms for 700 h at 67°C in bicarbonate buffer saline. Scanning electron micrograph analysis showed no delamination and approximately 1% of electrode material was lost to the bicarbonate buffer. The charge injection limit and the cathodic charge storage capacity within the water window were 4.6 ± 1.0 and 31.5 ±6.6 mC/cm2, respectively. Additional electrochemical analysis revealed significant charge imbalance attributed to oxygen reduction within the water window. These results, along with the flexible, chemically inert, and biocompatible substrate, indicate that sputtered iridium oxide films on LCP could become the method of choice for flexible substrate nerve electrodes.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Manuscript received November 7, 2007; revised March 5, 2008. Current version published February 13, 2009. This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health (NINDS) under Grant 5R01NS032845-13. Asterisk indicates corresponding author. *K. Wang is with the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Neural Engineering Center, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106 USA (e-mail: email@example.com).
- Electrochemical testing
- Iridium oxide
- Liquid crystal polymer (LCP)
- Oxygen reduction