Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Neuromorphic liquid marbles with aqueous carbon nanotube cores

Mayne, Richard; Draper, Thomas C.; Phillips, Neil; Whiting, James G. H.; Weerasekera, Roshan; Fullarton, Claire; De Lacy Costello, Ben P. J.; Adamatzky, Andrew


Richard Mayne

Dr Thomas Draper
Research Fellow Biosensing/ Healthcare Technology

Profile Image

Dr Neil Phillips
Research Fellow in Fungal Analog Electronics

James Whiting
Occasional Associate Lecturer - FET EDM

Claire Fullarton


Neuromorphic computing devices attempt to emulate features of biological nervous systems through mimicking the properties of synapses, towards implementing the emergent properties of their counterparts, such as learning. Inspired by recent advances in the utilisation of liquid marbles (microlitre quantities of fluid coated in hydrophobic powder) for the creation of unconventional computing devices, we describe the development of liquid marbles with neuromorphic properties through the use of copper coatings and l.0mgml-1 carbon nanotube-containing fluid cores. Experimentation was performed through sandwiching the marbles between two cup-style electrodes and stimulating them with repeated DC pulses at 3.0 V. Our results demonstrate that 'entrainment? of a carbon nanotube filled-copper liquid marble via periodic pulses can cause their electrical resistance to rapidly switch between high to low resistance profiles, upon inverting the polarity of stimulation: The reduction in resistance between high and low profiles was approximately 88% after two rounds of entrainment. This effect was found to be reversible through reversion to the original stimulus polarity and was strengthened by repeated experimentation, as evidenced by a mean reduction in time to switching onset of 43%. These effects were not replicated in nanotube solutions not bound inside liquid marbles. Our electrical characterisation also reveals that nanotube-filled liquid marbles exhibit pinched loop hysteresis IV profiles consistent with the description of memristors. We conclude by discussing the applications of this technology to the development of unconventional computing devices and the study of emergent characteristics in biological neural tissue.


Mayne, R., Draper, T. C., Phillips, N., Whiting, J. G. H., Weerasekera, R., Fullarton, C., …Adamatzky, A. (2019). Neuromorphic liquid marbles with aqueous carbon nanotube cores. Langmuir, 35, 13182-13188.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 17, 2019
Online Publication Date Sep 17, 2019
Publication Date Oct 8, 2019
Deposit Date May 21, 2020
Publicly Available Date May 22, 2020
Journal Langmuir
Print ISSN 0743-7463
Electronic ISSN 1520-5827
Publisher American Chemical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 35
Pages 13182-13188
Public URL


You might also like

Downloadable Citations