From the radio labels (aka RFID labels) used on objects of all kinds to smart watches and bracelets, devices incorporating printed electronics are growing increasingly common. Printed electronics boast many beneficial properties; they’re inexpensive, ultrathin, flexible, washable, wearable, disposable, and non-toxic.
Printed photonics are an offshoot of printed electronics. This technology involves the printing of photonic devices, mainly sensors and light sources. With the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the explosion in demand for connected devices in every sphere of activity, printed photonics have a great deal to offer.
The digital printing equipment at INO provides inkjet and aerosol jet printing and also offers UV annealing and infrared technologies. Our printer can produce lines as fine as 25 µm, with spatial accuracy in the range of 5 to 10 µm. We print on a variety of substrates, including polyimide, polyethylene, polycarbonate, and photo paper.
We have already developed printing processes for temperature and humidity sensors designed for industries interested in product monitoring, especially through the use of “smart” packaging. Our sensors allow for real-time product monitoring using flexible, highly affordable technology.
An eco-friendly option
We’re well aware of the urgent need to reduce the amount of e-waste being produced, and we’re convinced that the mass adoption of printed electronics can only be achieved through “green” processes and devices that are compatible with the recycling chain. That’s why INO has become an active member of Canada’s NSERC Green Electronics Network (GreEN). By working to replace silver, heavy metals, and silicon with carbon, we strive to provide access to an increasingly eco-friendly technology.