Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Printed Electronics Widens Its Scope

Abstract:
Printed electronics has its origins in conductive patterns printed as part of conventional electronics, forming flexible keyboards, antennas and so on. Then came fully printed testers on batteries, electronic skin patches and other devices made entirely by printing, including batteries and displays. A clear next step has been to modernise static print with the e-reader and the talking poster with animated, light emitting display and solar power. These are partly or almost wholly printed, with a clear roadmap to making them lower cost and more reliable and flexible by using printing more fully in their manufacture in future.

By Dr Peter Harrop, Chairman, IDTechEx

Printed Electronics Widens Its Scope

Posted on February 15th, 2011

Making new products possible

However, we now see printed electronics and electrics certain to penetrate far more applications than anyone realised. For example, large batteries have often used a measure of printing of simple electrodes and connectors but much more sophisticated printing processes are being applied to next generation solid state batteries in such things as power tools and traction batteries for the booming electric car industry, even the electrolyte being deposited by print like processes. An important engine of this dramatic widening of the scope of printed electronics is new materials, particularly relatively low cost, non toxic ones with superlative electronic and electric properties from creation of light to sensing of specific gases and generation of power in various ways. A great deal of work is going on to develop these into electronic healthcare disposables for testing and drug administration, to take just two examples.

Colourful wide area solar cells

For example, Oxford Photovoltaics, a company recently spun out from the University of Oxford in the UK, has developed new solar cell technology that is manufactured from cheap, abundant, non-toxic and non-corrosive materials and can be scaled to any volume. Harnessing the sun's energy, the solar cells are printed onto glass or other surfaces, are available in a range of colours and could be ideal for new buildings where solar cells are incorporated into glazing panels and walls. By combining earlier research on artificial photosynthetic electrochemical solar cells and semiconducting plastics Oxford PV can now create manufacturable solid-state dye sensitized solar cells. The device is a form of thin film solar technology, a relatively new development in solar energy generation. Leading thin film technologies are currently hampered by the scarcity of minerals used. Other dye-sensitized solar cells are being held back by the volatile nature of liquid electrolytes. Oxford PV's technology replaces the liquid electrolyte with a solid organic semiconductor, enabling entire solar modules to be screen printed onto glass or other surfaces. The technology was developed by Dr Henry Snaith, of Oxford University's Department of Physics, who said, "One of the great advantages is that we can process it over large areas very easily. You don't have to worry about extensive sealing and encapsulation, which is an issue for the electrolyte dye cell."

Avoiding wet electrolytes

Printing solids is valuable, or at least printing materials that can easily be turned into solids at low enough temperatures not to damage low cost plastic film substrates. For example, so called copper indium gallium diselenide CIGS solar cells provide to only source of electricity for elegant solar boats for up to 150 people made by Kopf Solarschiff in Germany.

Inorganic, organic and composite inks

Combining organic and inorganic chemicals is increasingly the way to go rather than a misguided approach that used to see purely organic chemicals taking over. To take one instance of this, GeorgiaTech has printed flexible transistor arrays using High K inorganic gate dielectric with organic layers. The Russians, Koreans and others are racing to make flexible colour e-readers usually by printing both inorganic and organic layers and also composites.

Clearly all this concerns much more than improving the typical package, poster, book or battery, though there is much more to come in these areas. For example, a bird book will emit the song of the bird you touch simply by having electronic inks in the picture. More radically, cars will glow in the dark and have far more passenger space, aircraft and submarines will monitor their complete outer surface and military vehicles that destroy missiles that hit them. The common factor here is smart skin. Increasingly the multiple electronic and electric layers that constitute smart skin will be printed to save cost and weight and improve performance. A precursor of this will be the Northrop Grumman unmanned surveillance airship recently ordered that will be covered with thin film photovoltaics to provide power. Traditional heavy solar cells on glass panels are not an option here.

Invisible, self-healing and edible electronics

Some of the new developments seem like magic such as invisible electronics and electrics thanks to transparent printed components or the printed metamaterials that bend light. Researchers are creating a new type of solar cell designed to self-repair like natural photosynthetic systems in plants by using carbon nanotubes and DNA, an approach aimed at increasing service life and reducing cost.

"We've created artificial photosystems using optical nanomaterials to harvest solar energy that is converted to electrical power," said Jong Hyun Choi, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University.

The design exploits the unusual electrical properties of structures called single-wall carbon nanotubes, using them as "molecular wires in light harvesting cells," said Choi, whose research group is based at the Birck Nanotechnology and Bindley Bioscience centers at Purdue's Discovery Park. Nanotubes are increasingly put down in the form of printing inks for high speed and wide area. beyond that, several companies have patented forms of edible printed electronics for use in
healthcare and novelties.

Travel and transportation

Printed electronics is starting to have a huge impact in travel and transportation even before those solid state printed traction batteries for electric vehicles are ready. Light aircraft are increasingly all electric with printing involved in the supercapacitors employed as well as the solar wings. T-Ink combines printing and laminating to save up to 40% of cost, space and weight of instrument and control clusters to appear in the next electric cars. Certain small orders for printed and partly printed electronics in 2010 were of deep significance. For example, the Kovio order for disposable electronic train tickets in Los Angeles saw formidable printed nano silicon electronics in the form of over 1000 transistors printed by ink jet and screen printing onto stainless steel foil. Being compatible with the world's most popular RFID specification ISO 14443 which was designed for silicon chips, this analog-digital circuit was a tour de force announcing to the world that a huge variety of the simpler integrated circuits can now be replaced by lower cost, more flexible and more robust printing albeit on stainless steel foil because of the high temperature anneal currently required.

Unique event revealing trends and successes

The uniquely comprehensive IDTechEx event Printed Electronics Europe in Düsseldorf Germany 5-6 April will reveal an exceptional amount about these new successes and possibilities. Many end users and potential end users will firmly place the emphasis on applications rather than obscure academic aspects. The two day conference and tradeshow encompasses an awards dinner and presentations in the exhibition area plus major in-depth conferences alongside on printed electronics and on the new thin film photovoltaics. There are optional masterclasses and visits to local centres of excellence in the subject, on the day before and the day after.

Samples not just promises

Equally unique and valuable will be the famous demonstrations and the profusion of otherwise unobtainable working samples for attendees, including radically new product ideas. No longer are engineers the centre of attention as they make modest improvements to existing technologies using printed electronics: creative product designers are now in the driving seat and the results are startling. Hear from giants such as snackfood company Mars, major retailer Metro, outdoor advertiser JCDecaux, phone leader Nokia, the US Army and other users but also the most creative
and successful suppliers such as the T-Ink mentioned above, FutureShape with large area smart printed textiles and InteractiveWear. Then there are companies that are both supplier and user such as Samsung of Korea, this being a truly global event.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Cara Harrington

Copyright © IDTechEx

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Thin films

Nanomechanics, Inc. Unveils New Product at ICMCTF Show April 25th: Nanoindentation experts will launch the new Gemini that measures the interaction of two objects that are sliding across each other – not merely making contact April 21st, 2017

Nanomechanics Inc. President Warren Oliver, PhD to Present at ICMCTF: Nanoindentation experts will discuss new testing system that measures the interaction of two objects that are sliding across each other – not merely making contact April 17th, 2017

Bio-inspired energy storage: A new light for solar power: Graphene-based electrode prototype, inspired by fern leaves, could be the answer to solar energy storage challenge April 2nd, 2017

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

New ultrafast flexible and transparent memory devices could herald new era of electronics April 1st, 2017

UC researchers use gold coating to control luminescence of nanowires: University of Cincinnati physicists manipulate nanowire semiconductors in pursuit of making electronics smaller, faster and cheaper March 17th, 2017

Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance: Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs March 10th, 2017

Research opens door to smaller, cheaper, more agile communications tech February 16th, 2017

Possible Futures

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Video captures bubble-blowing battery in action: Researchers propose how bubbles form, could lead to smaller lithium-air batteries April 26th, 2017

California Research Alliance by BASF establishes more than 25 research projects in three years April 26th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Chip Technology

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

'Neuron-reading' nanowires could accelerate development of drugs for neurological diseases April 12th, 2017

Nanometrics to Announce First Quarter Financial Results on May 2, 2017 April 11th, 2017

AIM Photonics Presents Cutting-Edge Integrated Photonics Technology Developments to Packed House at OFC 2017, the Optical Networking and Communication Conference & Exhibition April 11th, 2017

Nanotubes/Buckyballs/Fullerenes

Nanotubes that build themselves April 14th, 2017

Intertronics introduce new nanoparticle deagglomeration technology March 15th, 2017

Boron atoms stretch out, gain new powers: Rice University simulations demonstrate 1-D material's stiffness, electrical versatility January 26th, 2017

New stem cell technique shows promise for bone repair January 25th, 2017

Nanomedicine

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

New Product Nanoparticle preparation from Intertronics with new Thinky NP-100 Nano Pulveriser April 26th, 2017

Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight multiple cancer types April 24th, 2017

Arrowhead Presents ARC-520 and ARC-521 Clinical Data at The International Liver Congress(TM) April 20th, 2017

Nanoelectronics

Researchers “iron out” graphene’s wrinkles: New technique produces highly conductive graphene wafers April 3rd, 2017

A big leap toward tinier lines: Self-assembly technique could lead to long-awaited, simple method for making smaller microchip patterns March 27th, 2017

Scientists discover new 'boat' form of promising semiconductor: GeSe Uncommon form attenuates semiconductor's band gap size March 23rd, 2017

UC researchers use gold coating to control luminescence of nanowires: University of Cincinnati physicists manipulate nanowire semiconductors in pursuit of making electronics smaller, faster and cheaper March 17th, 2017

Announcements

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Military

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Nano-SPEARs gently measure electrical signals in small animals: Rice University's tiny needles simplify data gathering to probe diseases, test drugs April 17th, 2017

New technology could offer cheaper, faster food testing: Specialized droplets interact with bacteria and can be analyzed using a smartphone April 7th, 2017

Teri Odom and Richard Van Duyne Honored by Department of Defense: Each will receive $3 million over five years to conduct high-risk, high-payoff research March 31st, 2017

Energy

Using light to propel water : With new method, MIT engineers can control and separate fluids on a surface using only visible light April 25th, 2017

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Announces Total of 172 Teams Selected to Compete in Solar in Your Community Challenge: Teams from 40 states, plus Washington, DC, 2 Territories, and 4 American Indian Reservations, Will Deploy Solar in Underserved Communities April 20th, 2017

Better living through pressure: Functional nanomaterials made easy April 19th, 2017

Shedding light on the absorption of light by titanium dioxide April 14th, 2017

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics/Energy storage

Video captures bubble-blowing battery in action: Researchers propose how bubbles form, could lead to smaller lithium-air batteries April 26th, 2017

Forge Nano 2017: 1st Quarter Media Update April 20th, 2017

Making Batteries From Waste Glass Bottles: UCR researchers are turning glass bottles into high performance lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and personal electronics April 19th, 2017

Bio-inspired energy storage: A new light for solar power: Graphene-based electrode prototype, inspired by fern leaves, could be the answer to solar energy storage challenge April 2nd, 2017

Events/Classes

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

National Conference on Nanomaterials, (NCN-2017) April 21st, 2017

Nanomechanics, Inc. Unveils New Product at ICMCTF Show April 25th: Nanoindentation experts will launch the new Gemini that measures the interaction of two objects that are sliding across each other – not merely making contact April 21st, 2017

Forge Nano 2017: 1st Quarter Media Update April 20th, 2017

Solar/Photovoltaic

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Announces Total of 172 Teams Selected to Compete in Solar in Your Community Challenge: Teams from 40 states, plus Washington, DC, 2 Territories, and 4 American Indian Reservations, Will Deploy Solar in Underserved Communities April 20th, 2017

Better living through pressure: Functional nanomaterials made easy April 19th, 2017

Shedding light on the absorption of light by titanium dioxide April 14th, 2017

Controlling forces between atoms, molecules, promising for ‘2-D hyperbolic’ materials April 4th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project