Functional Polymer Systems

Towards plastic electronics

We explore materials with special optical and electronic properties as well as processes and designs for custom applications. The spectrum ranges from the development of materials with semiconducting properties to chromogenic, phototropic and light-emitting polymers, which are processed into OLEDs. We use printing methods, for example to produce organic solar cells inexpensively. In the field of polymeric surfaces we have competencies in plasma treatment, functionalization as well as the deposition of thin layers.

Our services

We develop custom applications in the field of organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), organic photovoltaics (OPV), organic electronics, sensors and actuators. We need materials with predictable and reproducible properties. With the help of anisotropic functional layers elements for liquid crystal displays such as color filters can be produced. Using thermochromic materials, colors and color intensities can be controlled effectively. In addition, many new areas are opened up by adjusting the surface properties of polymers. Printing methods we use for example, to produce organic solar cells inexpensively.


Material development

  • materials, technologies and components for organic electronics
  • thermochromic and photochromic materials
  • polymeric nanocomposites and quantum dots
  • optical functional elements
  • semiconducting materials
  • piezoelectric and pyroelectric materials
  • liquid crystalline polymers
  • rapid prototyping by laser structuring
  • hybrid and organic sensors and actuators
  • surface functionalization and analysis


Application examples

  • organic light-emitting diodes and displays
  • photovoltaics
  • organic electronics
  • optical components
  • organic and hybrid sensors and actuators
  • surface functionalization and analysis

Our research topics

Thinner, lighter, more efficient − these days, technical equipment must meet increasing demands. Conventional technologies such as semiconductor electronics often reach their limits. Plastics, however, have great potential here. Materials and technologies for displays (organic light-emitting diodes, OLEDs), for power generation and conversion (organic photovoltaics), for sensors and actuators, and for optical components are developed at the research division Functional Polymer Systems.

The Fraunhofer IAP's "Application Center for Innovative Polymer Technology" which was inaugurated in 2012 offers us the opportunity to realize products and processes on a pilot scale under industrial conditions − a crucial requirement for the conversion into commercial products. The relevant quantities of materials needed for industrial application tests can be created, here. Also, we can perform industry-related technology developments, for example organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) or solar cells.

Our references

Armin Wedel

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Armin Wedel

Division director | Functional Polymer Systems

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam-Golm

Phone +49 331 568-1910

Taybet Bilkay-Troni

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Dr. Taybet Bilkay-Troni

Head of department | Polymers and Electronics

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam, Deutschland

Phone +49 331 568-1255

Christian Rabe

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Dr. Christian Rabe

Head of department | Chromogenic Polymers

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam-Golm

Phone +49 331 568-2320

Michael Wegener

Contact Press / Media

Dr. Michael Wegener

Head of department | Sensors and Actuators

Fraunhofer IAP
Geiselbergstraße 69
14476 Potsdam

Phone +49 331 568-1209