Manufacturing costs for Printed Electronics have been dramatically reduced using adphosNIR® photonic curing technology

(PresseBox) ( Bruckmühl, )
Reducing the production costs of printed electronics mainly depends on reducing costs for conductive coatings, substrate materials and the required processes (especially thermal processing). Since higher temperature sintering generally results in higher conductivity, that allows thinner conductive coating layers and therefore reduces adjacent material costs.

However suggested low cost substrate materials like paper, PET, PVC, PP, PEN are very temperature limited, which means special ultrafast photonic curing processes are justified. In the past only Xe-pulsed heating technologies have been considered, which have high capital cost for the equipment, require highly sophisticated process controls and need substantial maintenance effort, due to expensive, short life heating sources.

But now with adphos's patented adphosNIR® photonic drying and sintering technology we can overcome this hurdle.

For a large variety of potential PE production scenarios adphosNIR® is applicable:
- independent whether flexo, screen, gravure, Ink Jet or other coating devices,
- for thin film ≤ 1 µm up to even 100 µm,
- for drying and/or sintering/curing up to temperature levels above the temperatures at which the substrate is damaged
- ensuring short process times within a second or even down to 0.1 seconds,
- applicable for sheets, webs or even shaped components (3D-structures) and
- allowing very compact, accurately defined and controlled processing.

And all the above benefits can be gained at an affordable cost level justified by typical investment costs of < 0.5 to max. 4 €/1,000 m² depending on number of shifts used (1-24/7), narrow to wide applications (< 300 mm - 2,000 mm width) and for 3 - 5 year amortization estimates, spare part costs for NIR®-emitters of ~ 0.5 €/1,000 m² and energy consumption requirements of < 3 €/1,000m² (assuming 0.1€/kWh)

With these attractive unit costs for adphosNIR® based solutions, the unit costs for thermal PE processes can be now reduced by 500 % even up to 800 % for the required photonic equipment costs, if compared with available Xe-pulsed systems. The spare part costs also can be reduced by at least 200 % and energy consumption can be also significant less, up to 200 % (considering all required infrastructural needs).

These potential cost savings can drive substantially the success of PE application potentials. adphosNIR® photonic systems technology is to be demonstrated live i in use for several potential process applications at the LOPE-C conference in Munich (June 12th/13th, 2013) or can be tested and can be individually verified at the adphos application laboratory if you wish to visit.
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