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Inkjet Printed Active Element on Paper Based on Conductive and Thermochromic Materials

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Inkjet printing is a suitable technology for fabricating rapidly and inexpensively electronic structures that contain layers made of different inks. It is easy to integrate several printheads together for printing multiple inks and these printheads don't require much space when compared to, for example, conventional printing units. Inkjet printing also has a very low material consumption which makes it possible to jet typically very expensive conductive inks. Therefore inkjet printing enables printing of inexpensive active electronic elements even on such low-cost products as packages or other paper-based products.

VTT has developed and fabricated a game demonstrator that consists of six ink layers all inkjet printed. The layers were made from conductive, dielectric, thermochromic and regular inks printed on a paper substrate. The concept of the game was that a question and three alternatives for the correct answer were presented. When pressing any of the alternative answers, electrical contact between two ink layers triggered a colour-change reaction exposing whether the chosen answer was correct or incorrect. The reaction occurred in a couple of seconds.

Although a working demonstrator was realized challenges still remain for the fabrication of an inexpensive, preferably inkjet printed, power source.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 2007

More about this publication?
  • For more than 30 years, IS&T's series of digital printing conferences have been the leading forum for discussion of advances and new directions in 2D and 3D printing technologies. A comprehensive, industry-wide conference that brings together industry and academia, this meeting includes all aspects of the hardware, materials, software, images, and applications associated with digital printing systems?particularly those involved with additive manufacturing and fabrication?including bio-printing, printed electronics, page-wide, drop-on-demand, desktop and continuous ink jet, toner-based systems, and production digital printing, as well as the engineering capability, optimization, and science involved in these fields. In 2016, the conference changed its name formally to Printing for Fabrication to better reflect the content of the meeting and the evolving technology of printing.

    Please note: For purposes of its Digital Library content, IS&T defines Open Access as papers that will be downloadable in their entirety for free in perpetuity. Copyright restrictions on papers vary; see individual paper for details.

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