Future Links CW 10: Future Technologies Edition

What does the future of printing technologies look like? With our future links we provide exciting insights covering topics such as liquid nano printing, silver nanowires for printed electronics, stretchable circuits made by inkjet printers, curved displays for iPhone 8 and the scalable production of conductive graphene inks.

Liquid Metal Nano Printing is the Next Big Step for Electronics

In cooperation with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Monash University, North Carolina State University and the University of California, researchers from RMIT’s School of Engineering have developed a new technique that might revolutionize electronics and overcome the limitations of current chip production. Using liquid metals to create integrated circuits that are extremely thin allows engineers to apply many layers of incredibly thin electronic chips on the same surface. This process dramatically increases processing power and reduces the costs. Additionally, it enables the production of bendable materials and flexible electronics.

More at Printed Electronics World

Printed Electronics to Become Everyday Devices With Silver Nanowires

Scientists from Duke University have created nanowires, which might allow low-cost alternative inks for printed electronics. Instead of the most commonly used silver nanoparticles, they opted for silver nanowires because of their length, the fact that they contain fewer boundaries for electrons to encounter and cure at a temperature of 70°C. Furthermore the nanowires have a 4.000 times higher conductivity.

More at All About Circuits

First Stretchable Integrated Circuit Made By an Inkjet Printer

Engineers from Michigan State University announced the production of a technology allowing inkjet printers to make stretchable integrated circuits. It is based on nanomaterials and organic compounds, which have to be dissolved to produce different electronic inks. These, in turn, are able to create elastic materials for example to make devices such as OLEDs. This new production method might help reducing the costs for the mass production of smart fabric, but is not yet available by now. The next step is combining the circuit and OLED into a single pixel, which will take one to two years.

More at Futurity

iPhone 8 Might Feature a Curved OLED Display

There are rumours that Apple’s next iPhone will have a curved OLED screen. In order to produce this flexible display the company has already ordered sufficient components to enable mass production. According to anonymous sources, Apple will replace the traditional home button on the iPhone 8 by a distinct touch-enabled area. Among the new iPhone’s other features is a USB-C port, a glass casing and wireless charging capabilities.

More at Market Watch

New Method Paves the Way for Scalable Production of Conductive Graphene Inks

Researchers from the Cambridge Graphene Centre at the University of Cambridge have developed conductive inks based on graphene and layered materials. This is essential for the low-cost manufacturing of electronic devices such as flexible electronics, RFID antennas, composites, or coatings. Therefore the new method makes use of ultra-high shear forces in a process known as microfluidization to exfoliate graphene flakes from graphite. These inks can be optimized for screen printing. Moreover, the microfluidization method can easily be applied to other layered materials.

More at Electronics 360

Cover picture: Messe Duesseldorf / ctillmann