Leading the charge in Functional Printing
Functional printing is an exciting new field that combines conventional printers and futuristic electronic inks to create the devices of the future. Functional printing offers the tantalising prospect of low cost solar energy generation materials and biosensors capable of replacing painful fingerprick testing for diabetes. It's also a potential lucrative lifeline for the struggling print industry.
The NSW Smart Sensing Network spoke to our Head of Operations, Dr Ben Vaughan about functional printing and had this to report....
"The next time you’re standing at the printer waiting for it to churn out your latest report, imagine instead that it was printing pages of sensors rather than pages of words. Welcome to the fascinating world of functional printing, where instead of producing text and images, printers are producing functional devices. The simplest example of functional printing is braille: raised dots allowing fingers to do the reading. At the other end of the spectrum are multi-layer devices that have electrical properties such as light emitting diodes, solar panels, and sensors.
The Centre for Organic Electronics (COE) at the University of Newcastle is at the forefront of translating sensor developments in the laboratory into printable products that can be produced at scale by industry. A part of the Australian National Fabrication Facilities (ANFF) Materials Node, the COE is focussed on functional printing at scale."
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