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2017


“Our vision is to develop enabling technologies and processes that make it easier for manufacturers and integrators of largearea electronics to put together multifunctional systems that end-users can readily incorporate into their products.� Chris Rider, Centre Director


Welcome to the fourth Annual Report of the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics (CIMLAE).

Contents

About us

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In the past year, a key objective of the Centre has been to identify the elements of our technology portfolio that have the greatest potential for industrial impact and then, in partnership with industry, to define focussed “follow-on” projects that will enable a smooth transition from academic-based research to industrially-led scale-up.

Technical programme

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Integration of printed electronics with silicon for smart sensor systems (iPESS)

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Industry Interaction Case Study iPESS

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Meet Dr Iyad Nasrallah

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Industry Interaction Case Study iPESS

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Meet Dr Sheida Faraji

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Interconnection technologies for integration of active devices with printed plastic electronics (ITAPPE)

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Many of our projects, whether short “Pathfinder” projects or larger “Flagship” projects are transitioning to the next phase of their development and this is an ideal time for companies to partner with us. We offer a range of different participation models and we invite industry to contact us for an informal discussion about how we might work together to provide new innovations for your customers.

Industry Interaction Case Study ITAPPE Workshop

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Meet Dr Guangbin Dou

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In-line quality control of UV offset lithographically printed electronic-ink by THz technology (IQ-PET)

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Industry Interaction Case Study haRFest

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Towards single micron LASER Induced Forward Transfer (SIMLIFT)

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Meet Pelumi Oluwasanya

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Plastic nanoelectronics by adhesion lithography (PLANALITH)

32

Executive summary

2

Introduction to large-area electronics

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Printing process control by advanced rheology (P2CAR) 34 Industry Interaction Case Study Haydale and P2CAR

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Meet Dr Alex Holder

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Multiphoton fabrication of bioelectronic biomaterials for neuromodulation (MFBBN) 40

Chris Rider Centre Director

Outreach and networking

42

InnoLAE Industry Day

45

Our people

48

Collaborate with us

54

Our partners

56

CONTENTS

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Executive summary

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


The vision of the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics is to tackle the technical challenges of multifunctional integration of large-area electronics systems, making it easier for UK manufacturers to produce complete system products that end-users are demanding. The Centre has now completed its fourth year of operation. This report provides an overview of our progress in the last year.

Our Industry Large-area electronics (LAE) is, at heart, a new way of making electronics that offers benefits not just in the manufacturing process, but also in the final product where new form factors, design and integration options are enabled. We work with a wide range of new electronic materials that are powering the LAE manufacturing revolution: organic and metal-oxide semiconductors, graphene and other forms of carbon and 2D materials, plastics, nano-particulate metals etc. We build systems that include unpackaged and thin silicon to preserve thinness and flexibility, and we are part of an emerging industry that is being led by hundreds of small innovative companies, many of which started life in the UK as university spinouts from pioneering academic research groups. Increasingly, however, we are seeing engagement with much larger end-user companies that are starting to understand the potential benefits of incorporating LAE technology in their products. We are also seeing the emergence of completely new applications such as e-textiles where the woven fibres themselves incorporate electronic functionality and bioelectronics for healthcare.

Our Technology Portfolio Following the EPSRC Centre’s mid-term review, we conducted a review of our Technical Strategy in November 2016 with a range of stakeholders. This has helped the Centre to focus its resources to achieve its key objectives. We have identified four major project areas for further investment. These comprise three of the original six Flagship Projects and one of the nine Pathfinder (i.e. feasibility) projects: • F  lexible & Hybrid Electronics: demonstrating hybrid printed electronics/silicon based sensor systems in applications defined by industrial partners (iPESS2) • Nanoscale Large-Area Patterning: translating the adhesion-lithography technique developed in PLANALITH Flagship project into a reproducible manufacturing process and demonstrating its capability in the fabrication of ultra high frequency diodes (PLANALITH4Manufacture) • Printed Electronics: demonstrating the advantages of the rheological techniques developed in the ARPLAE Flagship project as a quality assurance tool for screen and flexographic printing. (P2CAR)

• S  ystem Integration and Interconnection: developing a system integration technology for LAE based on laminated multilayer structures with embedded active and passive components; continuing to optimise the novel high-performance low-temperature bonding technique developed in the prior ITAPPE Pathfinder project. (SIPEM) We continue to expand our portfolio through involvement in collaborative projects with industry partners. 2 new Innovate UK projects, GraphClean and Plastic ARMPit (yes - really), were added to our portfolio in the last year, accelerating knowledge transfer to industry. The partner universities have now been awarded a total 32 grants worth £5.8m funding leveraging the total size of projects we are involved in to £16.8m. In total 39 industry partners, have been involved in our project portfolio. You’ll find more information about all our projects in the following pages along with several case studies highlighting how we work with our industry partners.

Our Outreach Programme Through our Outreach Programme, the EPSRC Centre acts to promote the links between university research and scale-up for industrial manufacturing and commercialisation, in collaboration with other intermediary organisations such as the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. Recognising the need to bring together UK researchers and UK companies to build and strengthen LAE networks, we saw an opportunity to fill a gap by creating an annual UK conference, Innovations in Large-Area Electronics (innoLAE), at which the latest academic research results and the most recent industrial innovations, in both product and process are presented. For our latest conference, innoLAE 2017, we once again had to secure larger premises in order to accommodate the increased delegate and exhibitor numbers. This year we added innoLAE Industry Day to the conference programme to bring together the UK’s leaders in LAE research, technology innovation and manufacturing in a business networking event which attracted 65 companies. Planning for innoLAE 2018 is now well underway.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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The Centre makes extensive use of invitation-only workshops to engage with industry partners and incorporate industry guidance into project definition. This year we held workshops for three of our projects: PLANALITH, P2CAR and ITAPPE. The total attendance at all Centre events has now passed 1000 delegates, over half of whom were from industry. As well as holding events, we continue to expand our reach through our active web presence (www.largeareaelectronics.org) which has received 36,000 visitors from 162 countries helping us to grow our network to include over 400 organisations. To help potential end-user organisations visualise what LAE can achieve and so to promote market pull for the EPSRC Centre and UK value chain companies, we have produced a well-engineered working demonstrator incorporating LAE technology from 5 UK companies and CPI, part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. The demonstrator takes the form of an interactive book, FlexBook, and will be on show at innoLAE 2018.

Our Centre Following a recommendation from our mid-term review panel that the EPSRC Centre should amend its governance structure to ensure that the strategic plan is efficiently executed and reduce the size of the body providing independent advice on strategy. The first meeting of our new Steering Group took place in February 2017. In order to ensure that there is sufficient time to complete the Flagship project programme, produce the demonstrators and engage with industry to secure the impact that we believe is possible based on the potential of our technology portfolio, EPSRC have agreed to a no-cost extension, meaning that the Centre will continue its operations under the current grant until the second quarter of 2019.

Publications

40

publications by centre researchers

Events

13

centre events held

Attendance at innoLAE event increased by

with 1002 attendees more than 50% attendees from industry

20%

Website

155k pageviews

36k visitors

162 countries

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Funding

IP

7 invention disclosures filed by centre researchers

People

£5.8m

£1.5m

£16.8m

for partner universities

income from industry

Total size of projects

32 grants worth £5.8m funding for partner universities, £1.5m income from industry, total size of projects we are involved in £16.8m

Network

420

40 post-doc researchers and PhD students (have been) involved in centre projects

Partnerships organisations in our mailing list

25%

39 7 industry partners

other UK academic partners involved in centre projects

increase on last year

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

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Introduction to large-area electronics

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


What is large-area electronics? Large-area electronics (LAE), including printed, plastic, organic and flexible electronics, is a new way of making electronics that: • is enabled by new materials that can be processed at low-temperatures; • permits the use of new manufacturing processes such as printing and digital fabrication for electronics; • makes it possible to have products with new form factors, new cost structures and the potential for customisation. LAE approaches can produce ultrathin, lightweight, flexible and rollable devices that: emit or reflect light for displays, lighting and smart windows; transduce light for sensing and photovoltaic energy generation; sense a variety of physical, chemical and biological parameters; form flexible or stretchable circuits for analogue and digital electronics; harvest and/or store energy. Emerging LAE technologies include fibre electronics for smart textiles and bioelectronics for a new class of wearable and implantable devices.

The future enabled by largearea electronics The interface between silicon and LAE is critically important to allow electronic systems of the future to combine the power of silicon with the form factor and manufacturing benefits of LAE. These multifunctional systems will provide the engine of innovation for new high-growth markets such as healthcare, automotive, wearables and the ‘Internet of Things’ as electronics moves increasingly off the rigid circuit board and onto textiles, packaging, glass, 3D product surfaces and even onto and into the human body.

UK companies have confirmed their presence in the field, as key components of global supply chains in multiple market sectors - leading research and development efforts in Sensors (e.g. Peratech, CDT Ltd), Printed and Flexible Electronic Integration (e.g. PragmatIC, Printed Electronics Limited), Displays and Organic Transistor backplanes (e.g. FlexEnable, SmartKEM), Organic Solar Cells (e.g. Eight19, G24 Power) as well as in printable ink materials (e.g. Merck, IntrinsiQ), and manufacturing capabilities (e.g. RK Print, M-SOLV, etc.). Several growth areas for large-area electronics have emerged clearly in the last year, presenting opportunities for both UK companies, and global companies working with UK partners, in multiple market sectors. To name a few: the Internet of Things, sensors, consumer and wearable electronics as well as new display technologies all represent significant growth opportunities for LAE. According to Cisco, there will be in excess of 50 billion connected objects worldwide in 2020. Of these, wireless connected objects are expected to grow fast with 25% CAGR in 2015-2020, more than 10 times faster than the semiconductor market 2. The UK is well placed to lead the field of Internet of Things (IoT) with companies like ARM developing IP across a whole range of connected objects, and PragmatIC Ltd pioneering the field of flexible Integrated Circuit technology in sectors such as consumer goods, security printing and wearables, working with companies like Procter and Gamble, De La Rue and Hallmark. Scale-up capabilities at UK Catapult centres, such as the Centre for Process Innovation, enabled companies in this space to grow consistently and assess their product ideas for market to accelerate early adoption, as proven by multiple case studies.

Peratech pressure sensors used in our FlexBook demonstrator

Growth opportunities In the year just passed, LAE has been confirmed as one of the fastest growing set of technologies in the world, with projected market growth from $29.28 billion in 2017 to $73.43 billion in 2027 1, which is of vital interest to industries as diverse as consumer goods, healthcare, mobility, electronics, media and architecture.

1

IDTechEx Report “Printed, Organic & Flexible Electronics Forecasts, Players & Opportunities 2017-2027”

2

CISCO VNI mobile 2016

INTRODUCTION TO LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS

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Sensors (optical, physical, chemical, biological)

Photo credit: EC project FP7 247710 Interflex

Thin and flexible photovoltaics, energy harvesting and storage devices

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Automotive (comfort and safety)

Photo credit: X2 Biosystems

Smart cities (energy autonomous distributed wireless sensors and Internet of Things)

Electronic circuits (analogue and digital)

Multifunctional integrated smart systems on foil

Photo credit: www.audio-luci-store.it Photo credit: Dave See

Healthcare (diagnostics and therapeutics)

Photo credit: Steffen Ramsaier

Photo credit: BodyTel

Displays, lighting and smart windows (emissive or reflective)

LAE Markets

Food and packaging (active sensors, active anti-counterfeiting and interactive packages)

Sport and fitness (wireless wearable smart devices)

Photo credit: Tetra Pak

Photo credit: Inhabitat

LAE Devices

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


In wearables and displays, FlexEnable, a British company that spun out of the University of Cambridge in 2000, has developed the world’s first industrially-proven organic transistor technology platform as the key to truly flexible and cost-effective electronics over large and small surfaces. Their technology can drive organic liquid crystal displays (OLCD) and organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screens and sensors. They are paper-thin and flexible enough to be wrapped around a pencil. Not only does this mean screens can be integrated more seamlessly into wearable devices, it will make the way we interact with displays feel more natural.

Conformable organic liquid crystal display (OLCD) by FlexEnable (source: Reproduced with permission from FlexEnable Ltd. 2016)

Another promising opportunity for the UK LAE community is in the field of bioelectronics. Using organic materials in combination with flexible, stretchable and also degradable substrates helps develop bioelectronic interfaces that optimally interact with organs. LAE technology can overcome the challenges that conventional technologies face in this field (related to the mechanical and electrical compliance of smart implants) and achieve better compatibility. The scale of interest in bioelectronic medicine is illustrated by the announcement in August 2016 from GlaxoSmithKline and Google’s holding company Alphabet of a joint venture “Galvani Bioelectronics”, which will be headquartered in the UK and receive up to £540 million in investment contributions from the parent companies. Also, at the academic level, researchers at the Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics (CIMLAE), University of Cambridge, have developed and patented a manufacturing process which addresses

3

these issues and have produced highly stretchable, highresolution electronic devices. They are now looking for opportunities to commercially develop and license their technology that will allow the fabrication of stretchable and biocompatible bio-sensor electrodes for wearable and implantable devices.

Stretchable Biocompatible Electrodes for Biosensors, (source: University of Cambridge, 20 Sept. 2017 3)

A bright future for large-area electronics in the UK The UK has been a pioneer in the field of organic and printed electronics for over two decades from initial inventions in UK universities up to the present, when leading companies are scaling up key materials and processes and new device forms are moving into pilot production and towards volume manufacturing. The UK has a broad range of companies active in LAE materials, processes and devices and has many worldclass academic research groups able to support the science and innovation needs of this growing industry. In addition, the UK is home to many end-user companies operating in the packaging, security and consumer goods sectors. We are seeing increasing awareness of the benefits of LAE amongst these end-user companies and an increasing engagement with the emergent UK value-chain. With a growing demand for the features and benefits of LAE and with the increasing maturity of the technology, we see a bright future for large-area electronics in the UK.

 calable process for manufacturing high-resolution, stretchable electronics, Cambridge Enterprise, 20 Sept. 2017 (https://www.enterprise.cam.ac.uk/opportunities/ S scalable-process-manufacturing-high-resolution-stretchable-electronics/)

INTRODUCTION TO LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS

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About us

Our mission: To tackle the technical challenges of multifunctional system integration of large-area electronics (LAE) in high growth industrial sectors through an innovative programme of manufacturing research, in a strong partnership with both industry and academia.

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


The EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics was formed to addresses the challenges of scale-up and high-yield manufacture of large-area electronics (LAE) systems and improving key manufacturing processes for enhanced performance. We work with a wide range of companies who are pioneering this electronics manufacturing revolution and with end-users who see its commercial potential, helping to establish a vibrant new electronics systems manufacturing industry.

The objectives of the EPSRC Centre are to: • address the technical challenges of manufacturing multifunctional LAE systems; • develop a long-term research programme in advanced manufacturing processes aimed at ongoing reduction in manufacturing cost and improvement in system performance; • support the scale-up of technologies and processes developed in and with the EPSRC Centre by UK manufacturing industry; and • promote the adoption of LAE technologies by the wider UK electronics manufacturing industry. The EPSRC Centre will receive total funding of £5.6m over 5 years from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), which we have leveraged with industry support and further grant funding to an overall project portfolio of £16m. The EPSRC Centre opened in October 2013 and the EPSRC has agreed a no-cost extension for the Centre to run until June 2019.

About EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing We are one of 16 Centres for Innovative Manufacturing which were funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) as part of a novel approach to maximise the impact of innovative research for the UK, supporting existing industries, and more importantly, opening up new industries and markets in growth areas. Each centre has received five years of funding to retain staff, develop collaborations, carry out feasibility studies, and support research projects. Each centre has been co-created with business, with EPSRC support being used as a platform from which the centres have secured further investment from industry and other funders.

The EPSRC Centre is a partnership between the University of Cambridge (Cambridge Innovation and Knowledge Centre, CIKC), Imperial College London (Centre for Plastic Electronics, CPE), Swansea University (Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating, WCPC) and the University of Manchester (Organic Materials Innovation Centre, OMIC). A further 7 UK academic institutions have been involved in projects with the EPSRC Centre along with a total of 39 industry partners.

ABOUT US

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Technical programme

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


The Centre’s technical programme is designed to deliver a coherent programme of research to address industry needs and provide the capabilities to meet the manufacturing requirements of early market opportunities for LAE systems.

The programme is organised into themes:

Advanced Manufacturing Processes The advanced manufacturing processes (AMP) theme investigates concepts for high-resolution high-yield, high-volume methods to increase functional device performance and reduce cost. • Developing high resolution patterning processes for higher device and system performance. • Development of novel multifunctional materials systems and patterning processes for improved manufacturability.

System Integration The system integration (SI) theme addresses the end-user need for multifunctional systems in a range of applications that either require significant printing content or the distribution of functions over a large area and therefore where a printing-based manufacturing approach makes economic sense. All these applications require some form of on-board power, a sensor, some processing and an output. This theme is developing innovative, cost-effective processes for high-yield LAE system manufacture by approaching the task from first principles, considering and co-optimising all aspects including system design, materials selection, process development and testing. • Developing innovative approaches to multifunctional system manufacture of large-area electronics using processes that minimise cost. • Reducing the cost of system integration by developing a Design for Manufacture approach which co-optimises yield and performance. • Developing novel approaches to high-throughput functional testing.

Emerging Technologies Part of the strategic role of the Centre is to identify new technology platforms and exciting application areas. This year we have identified two areas of emerging technology that will be increasingly important in the future and are strategically linked to our large-area electronics portfolio: 1. bioelectronics, we have a growing activity in this field including a Pathfinder project and a PhD studentship 2. e-Textiles, through participation in a H2020 project (1D-NEON) Within these themes the EPSRC Centre has developed a portfolio of projects with a variety of sizes and timescales

Flagship Projects

flagship projects in the initial tranche of projects which have now been completed. For the second half of the Centre programme, the Flagship portfolio was renewed following the Technical Strategy Refresh in November 2016. We will now have four Flagship projects, three of which follow-on from previous Flagship projects and one resulting from a successful Pathfinder feasibility project.

Pathfinder Projects Pathfinder projects are small feasibility projects that were funded for 6 months with a budget of £50,000 and are intended to develop a proposal for a significant new research programme in LAE manufacturing or facilitate industry collaboration by establishing the technical feasibility of an ambitious new concept. Project activity is expected to leverage new funding and attract industrial support. The Objectives of the Pathfinder projects are: • To broaden the EPSRC Centre’s research portfolio, increase the number of its collaborators and promote technology transfer to and collaboration with industry • To pump prime new research collaborations and facilitate larger scale collaborative projects leading to significant new funding involving the EPSRC Centre The Pathfinder programme was initiated in 2015 with 5 projects, and a second call was made in the Spring of 2016 which resulted in the selection of a 4 further projects. The Pathfinder programme has introduced 9 new academics to the EPSRC Centre programme, 4 new universities and 15 industrial partners

Collaborative Projects The academic research at early technology readiness levels funded by the EPSRC grant creates a platform to leverage further funding from a variety of sources and the significant involvement of industry partners. As examples of this, we have been partners in 6 projects funded by Innovate UK and are involved in 5 successful Horizon 2020 European proposals.

Student Projects 10 MRes and PhD students have been involved in the EPSRC Centre cohort and we are looking to increase this number and build on our links with a number of the EPSRC Centres of Doctoral Training in this field over the second part of the Centre funding (including among others, the CDTs in Industrial Functional Coatings, Plastic Electronics, Sensor Technologies and Applications etc).

Flagship projects form the core of the technical programme; each addressing a major challenge in LAE manufacturing. The projects typically involve 1 or 2 postdoctoral researchers working for 2 years. There were 6

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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2014

2015

System Integration Analogue electronics Flexible hybrid electronics Printed gas sensors

Cambridge Manchester FlexEnable CDT

iPESS

Cambridge FlexEnable Alphasense

FLAGS

Neuromorphic circuits

Manchester CPI NeuDrive

Interconnection for flexible electronics Cambridge

Printed batteries Printed capacitors

NTU NovaCentrix Promethean Bowater Nano Products

Transparent conductors

Bangor CDT G24 GEM UPS2 Cambridge FlexEnable DeLaRue

RF energy harvesting

Cambridge Swansea CPI PragmatIC Swansea

Cambridge High-speed testing

Cambridge PragmatIC Optek CPI

SECURE haRFest

Flexipower

PHISTLES AUTOFLEX

Advanced Manufacturing Processes High-speed diodes

Imperial

Advanced rheology

Swansea

PLANALITH ARPLAE

Laser processing

Topology defined patterning

NTU PragmatIC

Imperial

PASMOMA

Emerging Technologies e-textiles

Bioelectronics

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017

Cambridge Oxford Henkel LG Display RELATS SAATI Solvay


2016

2017

2018

Studentship Studentship

iPESS2 Analog Beko Syngenta ARM CPI DSTL

Novalia CPI NeuDrive

GraphClean Studentship

Plastic ARMPit

ARM PragmatIC Unilever

pneuron

Imperial Tribus-D PragmatIC CPI FlexEn

ITAPPE CDT MSOLV PEL FlexEnable

Zinergy

SIPEM

OPCAP

Stable

Flagship project Pathfinder project Collaborative project Follow-on funding Studentship Centre university Partner university Industry partner Spin off

Chester QMUL NTU NSI-MI TeraView TeTechS Nano Products

IQ-PET

Cambridge PragmatIC PEL

PLANALITH4Manufacture

P2CAR Haydale icmPrint

LAFLEXEL Swansea Oxford Lasers NeuDrive PragmatIC Microsemi NSG

SIMLIFT

Studentship

1D-NEON

Lancaster UCL Kenichi Galvani Bioelectronics

MFBBN

EPSRC grant

Studentship TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Project Portfolio Contents 1. System Integration - FLAGSHIP Integration of printed electronics with silicon for smart sensor systems (iPESS) Hybrid printed/silicon based sensor systems, including printed gas sensors and analogue electronics amplifier 18 2. System Integration - FLAGSHIP Interconnection technologies for integration of active devices with printed plastic electronics (ITAPPE) Methods for attaching active devices to low-temperature plastic substrates

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3. System Integration - PATHFINDER In-line quality control of UV offset lithographically printed electronic-ink by THz technology (IQ-PET) Quality control systems based on the use of THz radiation

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4. System Integration - PATHFINDER Towards single micron LASER Induced Forward Transfer (SIMLIFT) Improving the resolution of laser transfer technology

30

5. Advanced Manufacturing Processes - FLAGSHIP Plastic nanoelectronics by adhesion lithography (PLANALITH) Novel fabrication technique for the production of a range of high performance optoelectronic devices 32 6. Advanced Manufacturing Processes - FLAGSHIP Printing process control by advanced rheology (P2CAR) Rheological technique for quality assurance tool in printed electronics 34 7. Emerging Technologies - PATHFINDER Multiphoton fabrication of bioelectronic biomaterials for neuromodulation (MFBBN) Printing conductive polymers to stimulate individual nerves 40

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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FLAGSHIP INVESTIGATORS HENNING SIRRINGHAUS MIKE TURNER KRISHNA PERSAUD INSTITUTION UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER PARTNERS ANALOG DEVICES ARM ALPHASENSE FLEXENABLE CDT SYNGENTA DSTL BEKO CPI

SYSTEM INTEGRATION

Integration of printed electronics with silicon for smart sensor systems (iPESS) Modern living demands that everyday objects become ever more intelligent, more interconnected and more autonomous â&#x20AC;&#x201C; to work in the background, without any intervention to service our increasingly complex needs. To deliver this societal driver will require trillions of flexible integrated sensor systems consisting of memory, logic circuits and transducers. The vision of the iPESS project is that these sensors are best realised using a hybrid technology approach, combining commercial small-size silicon microelectronic chips for complex data processing and communication tasks with printed electronic components for the sensors and the signal conditioning of the sensor outputs. This is particularly appropriate for applications where multiple sensors that canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be easily miniaturised are distributed over a relatively large substrate area. Our approach aims to realise such smart sensors with new mechanically flexible form factors and at low cost. The iPESS project aims to deliver: (i) printed gas sensor elements with commercially acceptable sensitivity and specificity; (ii) Integration of this sensor array with a silicon chip on a single substrate to give a sensor system that can be operated from a USB cable or battery and output to a laptop; (iii) Integration of a printed gas sensor with a printed analogue amplifier with sufficient gain and stability for reliable sensor signal amplification; (iv) integration of sensor system with silicon microcontroller with built-in analogue-to-digital converter and (v) demonstrate an integrated sensor system in applications defined by industrial partners. The major challenges to be overcome include: (i) stability, sensitivity and reproducibility of the printed sensor systems for industrial application; (ii) operational voltage, stability, performance and reproducibility of printed analogue amplifier for industrial need; (iii) development of a simple and robust integration process for sensors, analogue electronics, silicon, device power and output to deliver working demonstrators that have been defined by industry partners. The researchers at the University of Manchester have developed field-effect transistor (FET) sensors with high chemical specificity. They demonstrated a flexible, solution-processed organic FET (OFET) sensor array that can operate at voltages compatible with battery powered operation (< 3V). These can detect a wide range of analytes and have been integrated into sensor systems (see images): (i) sub-ppm levels of ammonia in ambient conditions, (ii) hydrocarbons or (iii) polar analytes such as alcohols, ketones or esters under ambient conditions or even sub-ambient temperatures. The group at the University of Cambridge demonstrated an integration of low-voltage complementary circuits based on n-type amorphous metal-oxide semiconductors and p-type conjugated polymer semiconductor FETs on ultraflexible substrates. FETs were operable at 3V, and hence analogue differential amplifier circuits were realised at 5V-8V, suitable for battery operation. The highest reported operation for battery compatible, ultra-flexible solution-processable electronics was achieved with signal amplifiers reaching gains of over 1000 (Pecunia et al., Adv. Mat., 29, 1606938 (2017)). We are working with industrial partners to explore applications for integrated OFET-based gas sensor systems for applications ranging from food spoilage monitoring to agricultural applications. These systems have been demonstrated

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


for a number of important industrial applications with partners such as CDT and Beko (see case studies). In the current phase of iPESS we are developing an integrated sensor system that combines the OFET sensors with a printed analogue front end for signal amplification and a suitable energy source that provides reliable power during operation. We are engaging with flexible electronics industrial partners to source flexible circuit components and are developing an integration process for a complete sensor system.

a

b

c

d

Photographs of sensor, integrated system and packaged device for detection of polar analytes Figure a) Electrical characteristics and b) voltage gain of University of Cambridge complementary hybrid signal amplifiers. c) Delamination of amplifier foils from carrier substrate. d) Amplifier foil bonded for testing

Industry interaction In recent years more and more capable plastic electronic device components (FETs, solar cells, LEDs, sensors, etc.) have been developed that are meeting the performance requirements for a broad range of applications. However, one of the remaining grand challenges in the field is to integrate these different components into working systems that address the requirements of real-world applications. This requires careful consideration of specific process compatibility issues such as common processing temperature or solvent orthogonality as well as mechanical and electrical interface issues. In the iPESS project we are developing such a system integration approach in the context of smart sensor applications. We work in close collaboration with our industrial partners to ensure that industrial manufacturing requirements are fully addressed. We are also interested in engaging with new industrial partners from across the plastic electronics value chain, for example, to integrate higher performance components, to explore novel manufacturing technologies and integration processes or to demonstrate new applications for such integrated sensor systems.

Contact: Professor Henning Sirringhaus: hs220@cam.ac.uk Professor Mike Turner: michael.turner@manchester.ac.uk Professor Krishna Persaud: krishna.persaud@manchester.ac.uk

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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“The home appliance market is extremely competitive. These innovative low cost, low power gas sensors could enable new features of strong value to the customer, which would differentiate us from other manufacturers, whilst remaining cost competitive and energy efficient.” Natasha Conway, R&D Manager, Beko R&D Centre

The Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC; www.omic.org.uk) at the University of Manchester has made very significant progress in the research and development of a low power, low cost gas sensor technology platform based on printable thin film transistor arrays. The team lead by Professors Michael Turner and Krishna Persaud have demonstrated that the printable gas sensor arrays can be used to detect and measure a wide range of molecules in the gas phase, often with limits of detection less than 10ppm. Beko are collaborating with OMIC to explore how the novel gas sensor platform can be used in a range of home appliances to deliver smart innovative functionality. Beko is one of Europe’s leading home appliance brands and the best-selling large home appliance brand in the UK. Beko plc has an

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Industry Interaction Case Study

iPESS active research and development program that utilises the company’s know-how and expertise together with major collaborations with UK companies and Research Institutions to develop innovative new products and differentiating features which respect the environment and provide strong customer value. The team at OMIC have been working closely with Beko R&D to define the measurement challenge to be addressed and the collaborative research and development project to address this challenge in order to explore the best opportunities for developing the gas sensor technology to deliver innovation and benefit in home appliances. Significant progress has been made to demonstrate that the gas sensor technology can detect the molecules of interest under the relevant conditions. The project is now focused on fabricating a device that can be tested and developed within a Beko home appliance. The collaboration has provided the OMIC team with a valuable insight into the hurdles that need to be overcome to translate a technology from the research laboratory into the application and development environment. Through working with OMIC/UoM Beko have been able to rapidly evaluate the potential of their low power, low cost gas sensor platform, optimised for Beko’s specific use case within home appliances.

With our industrial partner FlexEnable Ltd. we work on flexible complementary circuit integration. Dr. Mike Banach, Technical Director of FlexEnable Ltd., said: “The iPESS project is addressing the key challenges to creating a commercially viable flexible CMOS technology. FlexEnable has been delighted to participate in the project.”

With Eight 19 Ltd. we work on photovoltaic energy harvesting for smart sensor systems. Dr. Christoph Sele, Production Manager at Eight 19 Ltd. commented: “Eight19 develops flexible organic photovoltaic (OPV) module products for a range of applications in indoor and outdoor environments. We are thrilled to be partnering with the iPESS project, showcasing the integration of organic and inorganic electronic components on a plastic film. Eight19’s flexible OPV modules are ideally suited for providing autonomous power to applications where flexibility and robustness are key.”

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Meet

Dr Iyad Nasrallah Dr Iyad Nasrallah is a Research Associate at the Optoelectronics Group in the Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge. His research is part of the iPESS project, which aims to realise an enabling platform for future mechanically-flexible smartsensing circuits. What brought you to where you are? I received an MEng in Electronic Engineering with Nanotechnology from the University of York. My interest in contributing to future trends in electronic circuitry then drove me to complete a PhD at the Optoelectronics Group, Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, under the supervision of Prof. Henning Sirringhaus. Here I characterised and improved the stability and reliability of Organic Field-Effect Transistors (OFETs). OFETs are the key enabling technology for the vast majority of mechanically-flexible circuits required for futuristic applications, such as the Internet-of-Things (IoT).

What do you focus on now? Within iPESS, my main research focus has been the development of ultra-flexible and ultra-low power

signal-conditioning circuitry, such as signal amplifiers, using novel hybrid complementary (CMOS) technologies. These are the crucial circuits that interface inputs such as sensors to outputs such as microprocessors and user-friendly displays. iPESS has allowed me to discover the power of my PhD outcomes towards such reallife applications. Over the past year the project has yielded the highest performing ultra-flexible ultra-low power signal amplifiers to date. The natural progression is to realise a fullyflexible prototype sensing circuit, which has allowed me to merge my background in Electronic Engineering with my expertise in organic electronics development.

Do you interact with the wider large-area electronics community? CIMLAE has brought together a cohort of very talented researchers. Although varied in research focus, the common goal of large-area electronics has provided a great platform of discussions and brainstorming through regular meetings. Also, the yearly innoLAE conference organised by the centre has been a melting pot of leaders in the field, allowing me to stay up-todate with the latest developments.

Do you engage with industry, and why? With research initiatives gearing their outcomes towards massmarket applications, CIMLAE encourages very timely and necessary interactions and collaborations with industrial partners. In the context of my research, I have been able to incorporate into it the stringent standards and manufacturing methods used within industry, making the research outcomes so much closer to mass-market realisation. iPESS is best described as a â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;milestoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; project, as it elegantly showcases the capabilities of the current state-of-the-art. The outcomes of the project will have planted a seed to foster greater research and development efforts into realising a countless array of flexible circuits catering for futuristic applications.

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Industry Interaction Case Study

iPESS Progress through partnership: Academia tackle industrial challenges

Lithographically defined electrodes on plastic film

â&#x20AC;&#x153;CDT regards the technology under development within iPESS as a very promising approach to gas sensing platforms applicable for many of the measurement challenges in the agricultural sector.â&#x20AC;? Dr Nick Dartnell, Senior scientist, Cambridge Display Technology Ltd. (CDT)

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The team at Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC; www. omic.org.uk) at the University of Manchester, led by Professors Michael Turner and Krishna Persaud, have demonstrated that the printable gas sensor arrays can be used to detect and measure a wide range of molecules in the gas phase. The novel gas sensor platform under development in OMIC is of interest to CDT Ltd and a collaboration has been established within the CIMLAE iPESS2 project to investigate if the novel sensors can be used to monitor the condition of crops in storage. CDT began as a spin-out company from the Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge (1992) to develop polymer OLED technology. Since 2007, CDT has been part of Sumitomo Chemical. The 100-strong CDT interdisciplinary team has world-class expertise in physics, chemistry, engineering, microelectronics, materials and life sciences. CDT scientists work on a range of topics from fundamental understanding to optimising materials and devices for market applications across organic electronics, energy harvesting and storage, biosensors, opto-electronic

detection, flexible OLED and OLED displays and lighting. The team at OMIC, through consultation with CDT, are investigating how the sensor technology may be developed to monitor the volatile gases emitted by a range of crops in storage. Through this interaction with the University of Manchester in the iPESS project, CDT can provide insight from an industry perspective on the requirements and challenges of measuring volatile organic molecules emitted by crops in storage. Progress has been made to show that the gas sensor technology can detect the organic molecules of interest. The project is now investigating if the sensing platform can detect the organic molecules of interest under the types of conditions encountered in crop storage. Working with OMIC has provided CDT with an insight into the novel gas sensing platform and into the work of the OMIC team to develop the technology to meet the challenges of monitoring for the volatile organic compounds associated with the on-set of rot or disease from crops in storage.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Meet

Dr Sheida Faraji I come from a diverse educational background since, for me, science has always been a magical and intriguing field which one can explore endlessly. Which fields have your studies touched upon? Having completed my undergraduate in Electronic Systems Engineering, I went on to get my MSc in Electrical Power Engineering and MPhil in Paper technology. I then decided to do my PhD in Nanoscience at Centre for Doctoral Training (NOWNANO) at the University of Manchester. The first 6-month course gave me the opportunity to study Nanoscience and its application in a variety of specialities such as medicine, materials and engineering. My PhD project was a multi-disciplinary research on high-k nanocomposite dielectrics for printed electronics.

How did you come to be involved with the EPSRC Centre? I was introduced to the EPSRC Centre by my PhD supervisors in 2014 when I started my postdoctoral research. In 2015, I presented my research at the Innovations in Large-Area Electronics (innoLAE) Conference organised by the Centre and was awarded the best poster prize. Between 2014 and 2016,

I worked as a postdoc in areas of high-k nanocomposites, aqueous 2D materials inks and recombinant spider silk and graphene fibre composites. Although my postdoctoral research at that time was not directly associated with the iPESS project, I was acquainted with the project and assisted the team at OMIC with evaluation of dielectric choice for realisation of low-voltage operating OFETs. I accompanied the team to the Printed Sensors workshop hosted by the Centre in February 2016 in London to showcase the developed sensing platform. Following officially joining the EPSRC Centre in Feb 2017, I have been actively engaged with research activities of OMIC within the iPESS project.

What do you do within the Organic Materials Innovation Centre? At OMIC, we explore materials and printing techniques for the development of a scalable manufacturing process for OFET devices for gaseous sensing applications. My main responsibilities are fabrication of flexible OFETs and evaluation of their performance as the platform for various gaseous sensing applications in food, healthcare and environmental sectors. The work is fascinating and challenging and requires optimisation of OFETs performance to provide tailored sensor responses for each application.

Do you get the opportunity to interact with industry? For large-area manufacturing of the sensor arrays, I have been working closely with our industrial colleagues for the effective fulfilment of technology transfer. This unique collaboration has empowered me with a thorough understanding of manufacturing challenges and necessary modifications to our processes at the University of Manchester to match their industrial-scale manufacturing capabilities.

You have relatively recently joined the Centre, officially. How are you finding it? I find myself exceedingly privileged to be working at OMIC and on iPESS project, building a bridge between the cutting-edge research developed in laboratories and the fully fledged technologies developed at industrial scale. The Centre is powerful in providing innovative manufacturing research, hands-on industrial processing experience and creating a national network of expertise in manufacturing knowledge. I strongly encourage young researchers interested in largearea electronics to join the Centre - take the adventurous ride I took and experience an intellectual environment.

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FLAGSHIP INVESTIGATORS GUANGBIN DOU ANDREW HOLMES INSTITUTION IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON PARTNERS CPI PRAGMATIC TRIBUS-D

SYSTEM INTEGRATION

Interconnection technologies for integration of active devices with printed plastic electronics (ITAPPE) LAE systems invariably require active electronic devices which may be either conventional silicon chips or flexible ICs depending on the application. Fast and cost-effective methods are therefore needed for attaching active devices to low-temperature plastic electronic substrates. Currently the favoured approach is to use isotropic conductive adhesive (ICA) packaging, where islands of conductive adhesive, dispensed onto the substrate prior to chip placement, provide both mechanical and electrical connections between chip and substrate. In ITAPPE we have been exploring alternative approaches based on non-conductive adhesive (NCA) and thermosonic (TS) bonding which have the potential to reduce material costs while at the same time increasing throughput and reliability. In NCA packaging, electrical connections between chip and substrate are mediated by conductive bumps on the chip, and the role of the adhesive is purely to pull these into contact with corresponding pads on the substrate. NCA packaging is more efficient than ICA at the point of assembly because it does not require selective deposition of the adhesive; instead the adhesive is applied over the entire device area. It also inherently provides an underfill between device and substrate which improves reliability, and is scalable to finer interconnect pitches which will be important for future applications. A disadvantage of NCA packaging is that it can be less reliable than other packaging methods because it relies on pressure contacts. However, as we have shown in earlier research, the reliability can be improved by including a thermosonic bonding step in the NCA process; this was the rationale for including a TS bonding element in the ITAPPE project. NCA packaging and TS bonding are both well established in traditional electronics manufacturing. The challenge in ITAPPE has been to establish processes suitable for low-temperature polymer substrates with printed conductors; appropriate methods for handling flexible ICs were also needed.

Silicon-to-flex (top) and flex-to-flex (bottom) assemblies produced by NCA packaging and TS bonding, respectively.

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ITAPPE was funded as a Pathfinder project in the 2016 round. It was initially established as a 6-month project, but was subsequently extended to 12 months following promising early results. In ITAPPE Phase 1 we successfully demonstrated NCA processes for attaching both silicon chips and flexible ICs to PET substrates with printed copper or silver conductors. The silicon devices were commercial, copper-bumped test chips, while the flexible ICs were test chips fabricated and bumped by our project partners. We were also able to demonstrate TS attachment of flexible ICs to PET substrates with silver conductors. Electrical joint resistance measurements were used to assess the quality of the assemblies produced during process development, and once suitable process conditions had been identified samples were produced for long term temperature/humidity reliability testing. The silicon-to-flex assemblies showed excellent performance in these tests, exhibiting only a slight increase in average joint resistance after 3000 hours at 60°C/90%RH. Reliability testing of flex-to-flex assemblies is still ongoing at the time of writing.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


The most interesting results from ITAPPE Phase 1 were those relating to direct flex-to-flex bonding, as this could potentially provide a solution to active device integration for LAE that is faster, cheaper and more reliable than other approaches. Work in Phase 2 has been focused on developing this further towards a scalable process for flex-to-flex packaging that combines both TS bonding and NCA underfill. In addition to advancing the core bonding process, we are working with materials suppliers to identify the most appropriate adhesive formulation for a flex-to-flex thermosonic-adhesive process on lowtemperature substrates. Desirable characteristics include low viscosity for easy displacement from the bonding sites during die placement, together with low curing temperature and short curing time. Also in Phase 2 we are working on functional demonstrators that showcase both the silicon-to-flex and flex-toflex packaging processes we have developed in ITAPPE.

Step 1

metal track

NCA

substrate

RFID tag demonstrator, with silicon active device and strap attached using ITAPPE processes.

Step 2

TS bonding tool

pad

Step 3

vacuum hole bump

active device

Step 4 TS bonding interface

pressure, heat and ultrasonic energy

active device

thermally cured NCA Thermosonic-adhesive packaging process combining NCA packaging with thermosonic bonding.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;The ITAPPE Pathfinder project has been an invaluable way to explore a potentially gamechanging packaging technology for flexible electronics. Early results are very encouraging and PragmatIC is excited to continue this collaboration with Prof. Holmes.â&#x20AC;? Dr Richard Price, CTO, PragmatIC

Industry interaction The ITAPPE project has benefited greatly from industrial collaboration. The three industry partners have remained strongly engaged throughout, providing a valuable mix of technical guidance, materials and practical assistance. All of the substrates used in the project were manufactured by CPI, while the silicon and flexible IC test chips were supplied by Tribus-D and PragmatIC respectively. Both CPI and PragmatIC have also assisted with reliability testing. Looking to the future we are interested in establishing additional links with companies in other parts of the supply chain, in particular materials suppliers, manufacturers of bonding equipment, and end users of smart electronic systems.

Contact: Dr Guangbin Dou: g.dou@imperial.ac.uk Professor Andrew Holmes: a.holmes@imperial.ac.uk

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Industry Interaction Case Study

ITAPPE Workshop future research. The day was well received by all involved and the productive exchanges by various organisations with shared interests were invaluable for the researchers and ITAPPE project.

“Everything was presented in the best possible format for discussion. I am very pleased.” Sergei Valev, Director, Honeystone Ltd. Engaging industry to inform and shape academic research The EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics (CIMLAE) works to support two-way communication and collaboration between industry and academia. One of the platforms on which this plays out are centre-led workshops which gather topicallyrelevant industrial representatives and create a space in which industry can shape research priorities and ensure that research is aligned with industry needs. This process of using workshops to incorporate industry guidance into project development has featured in all currently running CIMLAE research, and it is clear why. On September 12, 2017, CIMLAE hosted a workshop centred on the research progress of the ITAPPE project. This workshop provided the project researchers with an opportunity to interact with relevant industry representatives, to inform them of potential improvements on the horizon but also, critically, to allow industry input and experience to steer

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The day started with short presentations summarising current state of the art techniques, the ITAPPE project context, technical details, progress and ideas for the future. The following Q&A session took off straight away, with everyone getting involved in back-and-forth discussions. The questions and answers were very much collaborative, with each contribution adding to the previous statement or question, there was a lot of agreement over shared experiences, and academics passed questions over to those in industry for fuller, practical answers. Input from industry followed the lines of “from what we saw…”, “this is something we deal with a lot…”, “talking from a practical point of view…”, “if you go to industry with that, this is what they will ask…” – exactly the type of industrial engagement needed for refining research objectives and maximising the commercial impact of the project. In small groups everyone then worked through questions aimed at identifying the strengths, weaknesses and commercial applications of this new technology, as well as technical targets for the next research phase, and how industry can partner with the project to scale-up the process. The day prompted such interest and discussion that it continued after official proceedings finished. People stayed to share ideas,

samples, demos and to discuss partnerships and specific work examples and challenges. Back in the office after the event, project representatives from each discussion group shared the answers, concerns and advice voiced around their respective tables. These points, alongside feedback questionnaires and the Q&A discussion topics, and are now being taken into account as the project investigators plan the next stages of research – potentially in partnership with some of the attending institutions who expressed interest in working with the Centre to further develop this technology. Guangbin, a project investigator on the ITAPPE project concluded his presentation by saying that it has been “a joy to work with these [current collaborating] companies and the Centre.” There are a variety of ways industry can engage with CIMLAE research, from low-commitment termly advisory meetings or phone calls, to specially commissioned subprojects tailored for a company’s specific needs. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact the Centre.

“The ITAPPE Workshop had a constructive format where everyone participated to shape the future direction of the research work.” Steve Riches, Director, Tribus-D Ltd

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


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Dr Guangbin Dou Dr Guangbin Dou is a Microsystems scientist with extensive research experience and a track record of research excellence in device fabrication, integration and packaging. Can you explain your research field and current interests? My research interests lie in the application of electronics packaging and microfabrication technologies to the development of Microsystems. These technologies currently include laser-assisted packaging for plastic electronics manufacturing and MEMS (micro-electromechanical systems) fabrication for applications requiring extreme reliability. Working with Professor Andrew Holmes in the Optical and Semiconductor Group at Imperial College London, I am currently the investigator and researcher on the CIMLAE-funded ITAPPE project. I believe I am working in a very important area that could lead to smart integration of low cost plastic electronics for the future Internet of Things (IoT) – a practical application developed from my previous research into novel low temperature and fine-pitch integration technologies.

What is the ITAPPE project working towards, and how could that affect me as an end user? In the ITAPPE project, we are developing low cost, reliable interconnection techniques for large-area plastic electronics manufacturing. These techniques can build mechanical and electrical

connections between individual plastic or silicon devices and plastic electronic circuits to form functional large-area hybrid electronic systems, for example smart labels that allow houseplants to ‘ask for water’ and bottled milk that can let you know when it has reached its use-by date. This is exciting because ITAPPE could provide innovative bonding techniques for large scale manufacturing of plastic electronics that have the potential to improve our life experience through the new concept of IoT.

What has influenced the project’s progress so far?

What does your relationship with industry look like? It has been very important for us to interact with industry in the ITAPPE project, because our industry partners have efficiently supplied us not only test samples, but also technical support. In return, we believe this project will bring industry an innovative low cost packaging solution for large-scale manufacturing of hybrid plastic electronics in the near future. In the year to come we will continue our research success from the ITAPPE towards a system integration project.

In the last year, the big challenge in ITAPPE has been to develop bonding processes that are suitable for use with low-temperatue polymer substrates such as PET (polyethylene terephthalate). Through our previous research and current support from the Centre, we have successfully developed low temperature processes for both silicon-on-flex and flexon-flex packaging, using novel laser heating and thermosonic bonding. The support from the Centre has been excellent and this project has particularly benefited from professional industry links supplied by the Centre. In addition, the well-organised InnoLAE conferences have been very useful for catching up on state-of-art research developments in plastic electronics, and for understanding the packaging needs of companies in the large-area electronics sector. All the industry support for this project was initiated by friendly talks with the companies in the 2016 InnoLAE conference.

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PATHFINDER INVESTIGATORS BIN YANG ROBERT DONNAN BOB STEVENS INSTITUTION CHESTER UNIVERSITY QUEEN MARY UNIVERSITY OF LONDON NOTTINGHAM TRENT UNIVERSITY PARTNERS NANO PRODUCTS TETECHS TERAVIEW NSI-MI-EUROPE a

SYSTEM INTEGRATION

In-line quality control of UV offset lithographically printed electronicink by THz technology (IQ-PET) The project is to investigate the changes in THz spectra at each stage of the UV Offset printing process for electrically conductive and dielectric inks. This will guide where best to site THz sensors in a commercial offset press to achieve real-time In-line Qualitycontrol for UV cured offset lithographically Printed Electronic-Ink by THz technology (IQ-PET). We use lab-developed, standalone systems (THz quasi-optical reflectometry), and commercial THz TDS (time domain spectroscopy) and antenna Near-field Scanning (NSI) systems to develop quality control system which can operate with high-speed sheet-to-sheet and roll-to-roll production lines for system level integration in large-area electronics manufacturing. The Objectives of the project were to investigate the changes in THz spectra at each stage of the UV Offset printing process for electrically conductive and dielectric inks. The system synchronisation presented challenges. For a typical industrial 0.5m/ second press speed, the THz system would need to complete a scan in 0.01 seconds to achieve a synchronous match. During the project, 4 types of THz based quality control prototype and data analysis software package were demonstrated and compared with pros and cons. A paper “Terahertz characterisation of UV offset lithographically printed electronic-ink” has been published in Organic Electronics, vol 48, 2017, p382-388. The software and hardware developed from this project would be ideal prototype with further amendment for industrial practice; the improvement of spatial resolution of THz scanning and the physics between materials’ properties with ink quality would be potential research direction for application of EPSRC project in manufacturing.

b

a)THz –TDS system combined with 1D Conveyor which includes stepper motor controlled roller, acrylic feet for attaching to the THz rig, freely moving roller, aluminium plate with cylindrical guides and steel rods on either end. b) 2D Conveyor and c) its prototype which includes stepper motor with screw rod for x-axis motion, stepper motor with screw rod for y-axis motion, rubber shocks and polished aluminium plate.

Industry interaction

c

The project solves the frequently-demanded requirements from printing industries: non-contact, fast speed quality control. THz can supply the imaging mapping, and further quantified dielectric and conductive parameters other technologies cannot offer. Nano Products Ltd was closely involved with this project and they are very satisfied with the quantified dielectric analysis of their inked products at different stage.

Contact: Dr Bin Yang: b.yang@chester.ac.uk

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Industry Interaction Case Study

haRFest Advancing the state-of-the-art through collaborations The EPSRC Centre exists to encourage and support constructive collaborations, because projects that can harness the expertise and shared interests of multiple parties are able to unlock great innovative power. Recently the Centre collaborated in such a project, where an excellent and productive relationship between all partners enabled the successful creation of a novel printed energy-harvesting device.

“HaRFest addressed a wide range of potentially high volume applications identified by PragmatIC’s customers, and we look forward to progressing commercial discussions based on the project’s achievements.” Dr Richard Price, Chief Technology Officer, PragmatIC

The Centre has been involved in an 18-month Innovate UK funded collaborative project – haRFest alongside the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) and PragmatIC Ltd, to advance the state-of-theart by using printed electronics manufacturing techniques to develop battery-free, radiofrequency (RF) energy harvesting modules with a thin and flexible form-factor. The resulting harvesting device houses a printed antenna alongside printed passive and active components, including an array of tuning capacitors. The device can

be tuned to resonant frequency in order to maximise harvested power output. Without the harvesting device it would not be possible to incorporate printed electronic capability into thin substrates such as packaging due to the requirement for power from thicker and less flexible batteries. This next generation of printed electronic functionality enables product designers to embed electronics into their designs, creating innovative components that are low cost, smarter, lightweight and wireless. Flexible energy harvesting devices such as this have a key role to play in smart packaging for high value industries such as pharmaceuticals, enabling manufacturers to improve supply chain monitoring, prevent counterfeiting, and provide customers with usage instructions, quality assurance and shelf life assessment. Potential applications for encouraging brand loyalty are also numerous, from incorporating moving or flashing images into interactive point-of-sale advertising and smart packaging, to facilitating the collection of loyalty points.

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PATHFINDER INVESTIGATORS DAVIDE DEGANELLO DAVID BEYNON DAVID T GETHIN INSTITUTION SWANSEA UNIVERSITY PARTNERS OXFORD LASERS NEUDRIVE PRAGMATIC MICROSEMI NSG GROUP

80µm

45µm

Improved Ink rheology, layer deposition, laser processing

380µm+

SYSTEM INTEGRATION

Towards single micron LASER Induced Forward Transfer (SIMLIFT) Laser Induced Forward Transfer (LIFT) is a highly exciting and promising technology for digital processing of printed electronics for both micro and large scale applications. In LIFT, a donor substrate ink carrier is locally irradiated by a short pulse laser causing the transfer of material from the donor layer (D) to a receiving substrate (A). The SIMLIFT project looked at optimising various parameters associated with the LIFT process to achieve high resolution fine features. These parameters included the donor layer ink formulation, the coating technologies as well as several laser system parameters including, laser output power, focussed spot size, (D-A) gap and CNC scan speed. Current application of LIFT for large-area electronics is restricted by limitations in resolution and wastage associated to donor layer deposition. SIMLIFT aimed to deliver a transformative step of the LIFT technology towards high resolution features for LAE though a systematic study of affecting parameters from material rheology and donor deposition processes to laser system parameters. A systematic approach made possible by combining the expertise of the Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating with that of Oxford Lasers Ltd. The morphology of the donor layer material is the key starting point for successful transfer using LIFT. The project assessed different thin film deposition methods (spin coating, blade coating, roll coating) analysing uniformity, associated ink rheology and optical transmission. This allowed the definition of the most suitable conditions toward SIMLIFT in terms of quality and compatibility with industrial LAE manufacture. The project then combined the donor deposition with a wide range parametric study of laser parameters, adopting a nanosecond DPSS laser to assess the effect of D-A gap, speed, power and donor thickness. The results of the project highlight the need for thin liquid high viscosity donor layers with a high level of uniformity and a low surface roughness for good transfer, rather than traditional solid donors. Additionally, it was found that there is a direct correlation between laser power and donor layer thickness. It was observed that very tight control is required of the gaps between the focusing lens and the donor layer, as well as between the donor and acceptor layers. By optimising these settings the researchers were able to produce high quality lines with widths between 40 and 100 micron. Finally, by optimising the process parameters further, the researchers produced fine lines with an average width of 12 microns.

12µm Industry interaction • SIMLIFT was made possible by combining the expertise of the Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating with that of Oxford Lasers Ltd. • An Industrial advisory board supported SIMLIFT by helping define targets and requirements. The board included key potential end-users. • The involvement of the entire supply chain from material suppliers to end-users is key to the future success of LIFT

Contact: Dr Davide Deganello: d.deganello@swansea.ac.uk

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Meet

Pelumi Oluwasanya My name is Pelumi Oluwasanya. I am a first-year PhD student supervised by Dr Luigi Occhipinti at the University of Cambridge, Department of Engineering, Electrical Engineering Division who is also National Outreach Manager of the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics. I am a 2015 cohort student of the EPSRC Sensors Centre for Doctoral Training. I joined the CDT because I wanted to develop expertise in the entire sensor development value chain, having just concluded my MSc in Signal Processing and Communications at the University of Edinburgh at the time. My interest in Air quality grew tremendously through my mini-research project with Prof Rod Jones of the Department of Chemistry. I became aware of the huge impacts of air pollution on both man and the environment. I studied the amount of toxic and polluting gases in the plumes of vehicles.

What does your current research hope to achieve? The GraphClean project, which I am supporting as part of my PhD project, is a multi-university and industry project between UK and China aimed at innovatively addressing the challenge of bad air quality. I am working on developing a miniaturised and cost-effective sensor for monitoring fine particles (PM2.5) for indoor environments such as buildings or vehicles. This sensor will enable a qualitative and quantitative assessment of personal exposure, something that has been difficult to achieve because of the intrusive nature of current sensors.

How exactly will your sensor improve upon those currently available? The method I am using was previously demonstrated to work for detection of coarse particulate matter (PM10). I have been able to design a novel sensor architecture that is able to detect even smaller particles, i.e. smaller than 2.5Âľm (PM2.5), as these are more dangerous for human beings. One of the goals is to be able to fabricate, if possible, the sensor using printing. The resolutions I am aiming to achieve have proved very challenging for most available conventional printers, limiting the options to lithography-based processes. I am still keen to find collaborations that may enable this.

What are some of your research highlights thus far?

Thanks to the support received by the EPSRC Centres for Doctoral Training in Sensor Technologies and Applications, the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics, and my PhD scholarship provided by the Federal Government of Nigeria, I have been able to carry out my design work and experimental activity as needed, attend a summer school in Swansea, attend the innoLAE 2017 conference and exhibition and get exposure to world-class researchers and industry partners.

How will your work affect the public? Air pollution is a matter of public interest. It has been shown that exposure to these substances beyond acceptable limits can be fatal. Indoor environments are far less scrutinised because of the general expectation of good air quality. However, if harmful substances are released they tend to persist in indoor air for much longer than outdoor air, making it even more dangerous when compromised. Personal exposure studies, apart from providing a time series of pollution exposure, can also provide information about individual lifestyle. This area is gradually gaining traction. This sensor will have its production up-scaled by industry collaborators and will hopefully be available soon.

The device is now in the process of filing a patent application, with my supervisor and the support of Cambridge Enterprise.

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FLAGSHIP INVESTIGATORS THOMAS ANTHOPOULOS INSTITUTION IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON

ADVANCED MANUFACTURING PROCESSES

Plastic nanoelectronics by adhesion lithography (PLANALITH) RFID has existed for decades. While the technology has made many of our lives easier with the likes of contactless payment, electronic toll collection and convenient key fobs, the largest benefits have come in B2B applications, with the radical improvement in efficiency in the supply chains of many businesses. Particularly, ultra-high frequency (UHF) RFID tags have allowed for drastic improvements in asset management. With advances in large-area electronics, we are now on the cusp of rolling out this technology for a whole host of new applications, including complete barcode replacement. Work on the PLANALITH project has striven to deliver a missing component, a low cost printed rectifier, to allow this for the first time. When it comes to RFID manufacture, there is and always has been a question of tag price vs. performance. High quality electronics are needed, but at a low cost. For the type of ubiquitous tagging that the industry leaders envisage, a cost of less than £ 0.01 for next generation tags is needed. Carrying out a cost analysis, one finds that printing the entire tag (including the electronic components) cuts out the two largest costs (chip manufacture and integration) and enables tags in this price bracket. An RFID tag has three components: antenna, rectifier and logic circuitry. Currently industry can print two components, the antenna and the logic circuitry. However, without all three components, the cost reduction is irrelevant. Over the last 2 years, the technology to print a rectifier at low cost, capable of operating in the industry required conditions has been developed. This seemingly simple component has been elusive to researchers globally in the past, due to apparent limitations in printed semiconductor material performance. Intrinsically lower electron mobilities as compared to high-end silicon seemed to be a bottleneck for high frequency printed electronics. This roadblock could only be overcome through a paradigm shift in terms of device physics. As such, the PLANALITH project has sought to redefine the manufacturing methodology for simple electronic components (such as diodes). By focusing on device architecture rather than material performance, and leveraging unique and mass scalable nanofabrication techniques developed at Imperial College over the last 5 years, several breakthrough results have been achieved. These are interesting from a fundamental engineering perspective (such as the “world’s largest nanofeature”, a continuous nanofeature with a width to length ratio of > 100,000,000) as well as from an immediate industrial standpoint (the world’s fastest printed diode, a repeatable printed Schottky diode operating at GSM frequencies for the first time).

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


True to the nature of innovation and disruptive progress, these results have come from the convergence of many different ways of thinking and from a team with a diverse background. The approach involved the reimagining of a fundamental circuit component design, the rapid development of a nanogap electrode fabrication technique just invented (namely adhesion lithography), the incorporation of novel solution processed semiconductors using new low temperature methods (such as ZnO) and the high-end precision electronic testing. As such, assembling the team of physicists, materials, chemical and electronic engineers was one of the real challenges to be overcome, but once done, progress was swift.

Nanogap Electrodes!

o.5mm

Gold

Aluminium

Industry interaction Globally, the RFID market is valued at over $12 billion. Tags which operate in different frequency ranges have different applications, and thus the market is segmented by frequency. Traditionally, high frequency (HF) has been the market leader in RFID. However, market research suggests that as of 2017, UHF RFID tags have surpassed HF tags in sales volume. This is due to massive growth over the last decade owing partly to adoption by major players in the retail space. Over the next decade, UHF tags are expected to secure dominance in the RFID sector, experiencing the highest growth, with > 10 % CAGR expected until 2026. Previously slowed down by technological roadblocks, progress is now restricted by tag manufacturing cost alone. Given the maturity of the technology, it is highly likely that tag manufacture will be done solely via printing techniques, as opposed to the integration of silicon chips with printed antennas carried out today. We have developed a component that allows AC/DC conversion of both HF and UHF signals for use in RFID tags, a completely unique capability. The issue that now needs to be addressed is how to move this a-Lith technique towards being a reproducible manufacturing process for the production of high frequency diodes. It is this aspect that the new PLANALITH4Manufacture project will address. We have had strong interest from a range of industries and look forward to further engagement in the near future.

Contact: Professor Andrew Flewitt: ajf23@eng.cam.ac.uk

All photo credit: James Semple and Dimitra Georgiadou

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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FLAGSHIP INVESTIGATORS TIM CLAYPOLE RHODRI WILLIAMS DAN CURTIS DAVID GETHIN INSTITUTION SWANSEA UNIVERSITY PARTNERS ICMPRINT HAYDALE

ADVANCED MANUFACTURING PROCESSES

Printing process control by advanced rheology (P2CAR)

The P2CAR project and its precursor (Advanced Rheology for Printing large-area electronics, ARPLAE) aim to address fundamental rheological barriers to achieving high resolution features in high yield contact printing processes. Improved understanding of the interaction between the flow processes and the mechanical properties of the fluids used in these processes is required to establish a rigorous basis for better prediction and control. The projects form part of the Advanced Manufacturing Process theme within the CIMLAEâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s technical programme. P2CAR builds upon the success of the ARPLAE project to develop, test and deploy new rheometric technologies. The project is aimed at improving process control and process yield in the large-area electronics industry to impact the profitability of the sector. Prior to the ARPLAE project, the printing industry relied on crude measures of rheology which frequently bore no correlation with print quality. This is unsurprising since the techniques employed (e.g. flow cups, tack testers) lack relevance to the print process (in which the material is exposed to a complex fluid dynamical environment) or the complex rheological nature of the process fluids (which are usually non-Newtonian and frequently viscoelastic). ARPLAE made a major advance in quality assurance in establishing that there is a relationship between print quality parameters and rheological data obtained using the advanced rheometrical technique of Controlled Stress Parallel Superposition (CSPS). The benefit of using a novel multifrequency implementation of CSPS, known as Fourier Transform CSPS (FT-CSPS) in reducing the time required to characterise each sample was also demonstrated. The development of FT-CSPS has the potential to provide the basis for in line, real time, measurement and control of ink rheology in applications associated with formulation and processing of functional inks and coatings.

Objectives Continued development of advanced rheometric tools for improved print process control and the deployment of the techniques on commercial inks. Demonstrate application of the CSPS/FT-CSPS rheometric techniques in advanced manufacturing through Case Studies with selected Industrial Partners.

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


ARPLAE/P2CAR Oscillatory force Unidirectional force

Formulation Laboratory Viscoemetric Unidirectional flow

- Superposition of oscillatory and unidirectional flows - Probes viscoelastic behaviour of material UNDER flow conditions - Provides the key link between the formulation laboratory and the FLOW process

- Bulk flow but irrelevant to viscoelastic materials

Or Rheometric Oscillatory flow

Process Flow Conditions

- Inherently quiescent conditions - Linear viscoelastic experiments - Isolated from process flow conditions

No process relevance No correlation between rheological parameters and print outcomes

Flow

Superposition rheometry provides the missing link between the formulation laboratory and the print process and offers a route to improved process control.

Industry interaction Industry recognises that the techniques developed within ARPLAE/ P2CAR will allow them to overcome barriers to manufacture of large-area electronics by print and that the technology “promises simpler process setup, ink preparation and reduced work” (C. Rider, CIMLAE Strategy Refresh Nov. 2016). Feedback from industrial delegates representing over 20 companies and trade bodies who attended the P2CAR workshop “How Rheology Can Be Used To Reduce Waste And Improve Formulation” held in London on 25th April 2017 was very positive and allowed us develop the end user focus of the project. There was also a significant amount of interest in further work from those who were unable to attend. Guided by this feedback the purpose of the P2CAR project is to build on the industrial traction achieved through engagement activities under ARPLAE, with a view to implementing CSPS/FT-CSPS as a QA/QC tool. The project is also extending the techniques to ensure applicability to the wide range of functional materials and processes used in printed electronics. Further, the project aims to develop semi-automated algorithms that produce data which is readily interpretable by non-specialists.

Contact: Professor Tim Claypole: T.C.Claypole@swansea.ac.uk Professor Rhodri Williams: P.R.Williams@swansea.ac.uk

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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Industry Interaction Case Study

Haydale and P2CAR

“The use of advanced rheology techniques has enabled us to conclusively demonstrate the benefit of the Haydale Plasma process enabling better and more stable dispersions as well as the added functionality for sensors and conductive inks. We are working with the WCPC to further refine the approach for process control and quality assurance.” Ray Gibbs Chief Executive Officer Haydale Ltd.

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Using academia to unlock answers for Industry The academic team at Swansea University have used their advanced rheological approach to help industry understand how the functionalisation of ink particles will change the properties and print performance of their inks. This ability to predict process performance highlights one of the ways academia-industry collaborations can benefit businesses. As the study and findings below illustrate, this academic input has provided Haydale with critical information in a time and cost-effective alternative to print trials. The use of rheology to determine the effect of functionalisation of graphene nano platelets (GNPs) Graphene nano platelets are small high aspect ratio particles comprising of several layers of graphene. They are typically 50nm thick by 5µm, which gives them a high surface area to volume ratio and a tendency to agglomerate. Adding functional groups to the surface of the GNP enables them to be better dispersed and to provide additional functionality. Functionalised GNPs (f-GNPs) were created using Haydale’s proprietary plasma process.

It has been hypothesised that the benefits seen by adding the functional groups to improve the dispersion of the particles when in solution, is by increasing the repulsive force between the platelets and promoting particle to polymer interactions. The impact of functionalisation on dispersion can be identified using the advanced rheological approach developed in the ARPLAE project, which included equilibrium viscosity, small amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS) and controlled stress parallel superposition (CSPS). The aim of the study was to show the effect on the rheology caused by changing the functionalisation on GNPs in a screen printing ink. f-GNPs with 4 different functional groups (NH3, COOH, Ar and O2) were dispersed in TPu resin to produce a range of screen printing inks to be measured rheologically and by printing trial. The inks were tested rheologically using a Malvern Kinexus Pro rheometer and the standard WCPC testing procedure which takes measurements of both the viscus and viscoelastic properties. The print trials were performed using a DEK 248 automatic screen press and a single set of printing conditions. The prints were measured electrically using a 4-point resistivity probe and the topography was measured using a VEECO white light interferometer. The aim of the rheological experiments was to examine how different functional groups

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


changed the dispersion of the nano-particles within the resin. The concentrations of particles used in the inks was varied from semi-dilute to concentrated range. A higher equilibrium viscosity indicated better dispersion as the high aspect ratio GNP particles better maintain their high surface area increasing their interactions with the fluid and restricting their movement relative to each other. The best performing functional group was NH3 followed by COOH, then O2. The inks were also tested for their non-Newtonian properties using the small amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS) and Controlled Stress Parallel Superposition (CSPS) methods. The SAOS and CSPS data highlighted the impact of increased loading in the concentrated regime with the lowest phase angle leading to worst quality print despite the better particles dispersion. The order of the different functionalisation also

fits the polarity of the different groups and their affinity to the polar polymer being used, with NH3 being the most polar and Ar being the least. An increased polarity and matching of the functional groups for the polymer being used improve the dispersion of the particles. The importance of the particles being dispersed was seen in the printability tests where the NH3 shows an improvement over the other materials in terms of surface roughness and sheet resistance in the semi-dilute regime. In summary, there was a measurable difference in both the rheology and print performance of inks formulated with GNPs which had been plasma treated to attach different functional groups. When the results for the different functional groups were compared the same trend was seen in both the rheological and

Viscosity Pa.s

75

70

65

print performance, with the NH3 being best, followed by COOH, then O2 and finally Ar. This trend also represented the change in the polarity of the functional groups being attached and their affinity to the TPu. Whereby a higher polarity and affinity to the polymer produced an improved dispersion of the f-GNPs in the resin and improved print performance. The support of Haydale Ltd and EPSRC are acknowledged for this work. For further information on this study, please contact j.m.claypole@swansea.ac.uk

250

NH3

200

COOH

150

O2

100

Ar

50 60

NH3

COOH CSPS

O2

Ar

0

0.1

1

10

Shear rate (s ) -1

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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Meet

Dr Alex Holder Based in Swansea University, my efforts are focused on measuring and assessing the rheological properties of complex fluids. After finishing my PhD on the validation and application of novel rheometric techniques I continued working on developing advanced techniques to probe the microstructure of fast gelling systems, where the challenge is to measure a sampleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s properties as they change. Looking at the properties of matter that flows (or stops flowing) may seem dry, but it has allowed me to be involved in a diverse research focus - having been part of investigations in blood and plasma microstructure, commercial cosmetics, collagen gelation, silicon gelling systems and functional inks. This ability to apply mechanical knowledge with other specialists to solve the previously unsolvable is what fuels my passion for rheology.

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What are the major challenges your work hopes to address? My current project within the centre aims to merge the measured mechanical properties of an ink with both the functional and physical print outcome. From a rheological perspective, the greatest challenge with most functional inks is that by their very design they have a great deal of structure while stationary, which breaks down under the shear of the print process â&#x20AC;&#x201C; so that any probe of the microstructure of a sample at rest is unlikely to reveal how an ink behaves when printed. Simultaneously, measuring viscoelasticity and probing microstructure under flow is a challenge with current standard techniques being slow.

How are things going so far? My project so far has developed a new, faster, technique to measure these properties while the sample is flowing and is therefore closer to the conditions in which it is used. Critically, too, the technique has undergone rigorous validation using model viscoelastic materials. When we applied this new technique to a series of model functional inks made at the Welsh Centre of Printing and Coating, here at Swansea, we found that we could not only correlate ink formulation with the physical print outcomes such as line width or surface roughness, but also with functional properties, such as conductivity.

What are some of the highlights from the year? For me, the highlight of this project was the opportunity to exhibit this research to industry-leading ink manufacturers and printers at a workshop supported by CIMLAE and having it warmly received, generating a great deal of interest from the companies in attendance. Further, the opportunity to meet with and work alongside exceptional research talent from across the Centre has been invaluable.

Where will your research go from here? Looking forward, we are working on creating an even faster technique that simultaneously allows the extraction of more viscoelastic information. This should both improve the predictive capacity of prints, as well as develop a technique for quality control that can be performed in seconds and is specifically tailored towards inks. It is my hope that as we develop this technique we can help industrial print companies use it to optimise their print settings without the need for trial and error as well as show ink producers what a critical QC tool it can be.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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PATHFINDER INVESTIGATORS JOHN HARDY FRANCES EDWARDS INSTITUTION LANCASTER UNIVERSITY UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON PARTNERS GALVANI BIOELECTRONICS KANICHI RESEARCH SERVICES

EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES

Multiphoton fabrication of bioelectronic biomaterials for neuromodulation (MFBBN) Electromagnetic fields affect a variety of tissues (e.g. bone, muscle, nerve and skin) and play important roles in a multitude of biological processes. This has inspired the development of electrically conducting devices for biomedical applications, several examples of which have been clinically translated, including: cardiac pacemakers, bionic eyes, bionic ears and electrodes for deep brain stimulation. This project aimed to print electrically conducting polymer-based materials with nanoscale features that may enable the electrical stimulation of individual nerves which may be used to treat a variety of debilitating chronic diseases. Objectives: 1) P  reparation of conducting polymer-based materials using multiphoton fabrication on hard and soft/flexible substrates. 2) Characterisation of the physicochemical and electrical properties of the materials.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Together this academicindustry partnership has the mutual objective of advancing clinical opportunities in medical technology, advancement of scientific endeavor through publications, and providing security for intellectual property for the purpose of securing a path to commercialisation.â&#x20AC;? Dr Daniel Chew, Director Neuromodulation Translational Sciences, Galvani Bioelectronics

40

3) Validation of the efficacy of the bioelectronic devices to interact with brain tissue ex vivo in collaboration with Frances Edwards at UCL Neuroscience. The project entailed a variety of challenges, including: printing a range of conducting polymer-based structures (squares, rectangles, pillars, wires) on hard and soft/flexible substrates (glass and polydimethylsiloxane, respectively); ensuring sufficiently high fidelity of reproduction of the computer assisted design file to guarantee functionality; demonstration of biological utility by recording a physiological response to electrical stimulation of the brain slice using patch clamp methodology. The project achieved its aims and objectives, and over its course we have demonstrated our capability to print conducting polymer-based structures (squares, rectangles, pillars, wires) on hard substrates and soft/ flexible substrates with micron scale and nanoscale features. Excitingly, we found it is possible to print conducting polymers within a flexible substrate (polydimethylsiloxane) with protruding contact points for the polymer with a power source and biological tissue, and we demonstrated the biological utility of the structures by recording a physiological response to electrical stimulation of the brain tissue. The intellectual property that resulted from the project has been disclosed to Lancaster University. An EPSRC First Grant was awarded to Dr Hardy for a tangential but related project to manufacture bioelectronic devices via multiphoton fabrication (e.g. drug delivery devices), and follow-on projects are being co-developed with the industrial partners (Galvani Bioelectronics) to further explore the potential of this printing technique to manufacture useful devices that may eventually be clinically translated.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Technical efficacy: Conducting polymer structure printed on a soft/flexible substrate

Increasing Conductivity

Scale

Biological efficacy: Conducting polymer structure interacts with brain tissue Brain tissue Voltage stimulator

Patch Clamp Amplifier

6µM gabazine + 20µM CNQX 20pA

6µM gabazine (EPSCs)

20ms 10V x 80µs stimulus

10V x 80µs stimulus

Industry interaction The field of bioelectronics, neuroprosthetics, and implantable medical devices in general, are progressing at a fast pace. Traditional medicinal applications have focused on the central nervous system, and severe and rare disorders and trauma, including deep brain stimulation, neuropathic pain, and bladder control. More recently the peripheral nerves have been targeted, with applications focused on disease applications; such as vagus nerve stimulation for the treatment of epilepsy and arthritis. The field is still seen as a last line treatment, and this is primarily due to the route of application (surgical), but also due to the general lack of technological advancement in critical areas. One such area is the neural interface; the connection between biology and engineering. Here the tissue-material mismatch leads to significant foreign body reaction, and lack of treatment efficacy. New materials that are more biocompatible, more conforming to the tissue shape, and which can be manufactured in miniaturised form and bespoke to each patient’s anatomy, will greatly benefit the biology/ anatomy, the treatment efficacy, and overall patient access. Dr Daniel Chew at Galvani Bioelectronics (GSK subsidiary) has been involved in the project, in an advisory capacity, shaping the overall objectives toward clinical and commercial aims. Galvani Bioelectronics has, since its inception within GSK, nurtured an externalised R&D effort focused on leveraging the world-wider expertise of academics and the facilities of Universities.

Contact: Dr John Hardy: j.g.hardy@lancaster.ac.uk

TECHNICAL PROGRAMME

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Outreach and networking

"The Centre has taken a national leadership role, in partnership with the HVM Catapult, in supporting the growth of the UKâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s emerging large-area electronics industry through our first Industry Day in 2017 and through our Annual Conference and exhibition which continues to go from strength to strength." Chris Rider, Centre Director

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


The EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics promotes growth of the large-area electronics (LAE) field by supporting innovative manufacturing research programmes and collaborations between the academic and industrial communities. The Centre acts on a national level to champion links between university research and industrial manufacturing, as well as supporting the scale-up of technologies and processes to facilitate the adoption of LAE technologies by the wider electronics industry. This is achieved by working through a variety of strategies: • the annual innoLAE conference • a working demonstrator • networking events • partnerships

Innovations in Large-Area Electronics Conference (innoLAE) The innoLAE conference continues to grow and establish itself as the best place for the UK LAE community to network and connect. innoLAE 2017 featured a 2-day presentation programme with 40 speakers, 34 poster presentations and an exhibition with 23 companies. Best poster prizes were awarded to two teams led by Professor Thomas Anthpoulos (Imperial College London, Blackett Laboratory) and a team led by Professor Andrew Holmes (Imperial College London, Electrical Engineering Department). The poster prizes were delivered by our sponsors Cynora, Novacentrix and Cambridge University Press. From January 23-24, 2018, researchers from all over the world will once again converge to attend innoLAE 2018, presenting the view from SMEs and large global companies, leading manufacturers and end-users, research and technology organisations and academia. For further details, and to register for the conference, please visit: innoLAE.org

innoLAE2017 Sponsors: Platinum sponsor: CPI

Gold Sponsors: NovaCentrix & Cynora

Silver Sponsors: Beko & Merck

innoLAE 2017 Exhibitors: CPI, NovaCentrix, Cynora, Beko, Merck, DZP Technologies, Sherkin Technologies, RK Print Coat Instruments, Semitronics, Meyer Burger, Haydale, Heraeus, IDTechEx, DuPont, Optomec, Oxford Lasers, Silvaco, Printed Electronics Limited, SPS Europe, Dycotec, Particle Works, Bühler, LOPEC, Cambridge University Press and OE-A

Delegate growth innoLAE 2015

150

innoLAE 2016

210

innoLAE 2017

243

Exhibitor growth innoLAE 2015

9

innoLAE 2016

16

innoLAE 2017

25

Institutions represented innoLAE 2015 innoLAE 2016 innoLAE 2017

73 87 133

OUTREACH AND NETWORKING

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“Our company exhibited for 3rd year at innoLAE and each year we find new collaborators and partners and I learn something I learn something new, which is great” – innoLAE 2017 exhibitor “The conference is already very good and great value for money. Incrementally improving impact year on year” – innoLAE 2017 delegate "I think the mix of speakers and exhibitors is great - it really supports the principles of innovation. The conference showed clear evidence of fascinating advances in the field and the roadmap from ‘blue sky’ and lab research to the all-important route to manufacturing and the supply chain. As a relative newcomer I feel this conference provides a comprehensive picture” – innoLAE 2017 delegate

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EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


InnoLAE Industry Day An example of how the EPSRC Centre works to engage with industry and acts as a national centre for large-area electronics, is the innoLAE industry Day which brought together the UK’s leaders in research, technology innovation and manufacturing of printed, flexible and large-area electronics. 90 delegates from 65 organisations attended this event the day before the main innoLAE conference to provide an opportunity for UK companies active in large-area electronics to network and discuss the formation of a new UK industry body for the sector. The event featured a panel discussion on end-user needs for printed and large-area electronics with contributions from Jaguar Land Rover, Costain, GlaxoSmithKline and Savortex, covering applications in automotive, built environment, pharmaceuticals, packaging and the internet of things. This was followed by a presentation on future funding opportunities from Innovate UK, 29 quick fire company pitches in 40 minutes, and finally a networking drinks reception. The objective for industry day was to consult attendees about the formation of a new community for the UK large-area electronics industry, called eMergent. The vision is to accelerate the growth of the UK electronics industry by bringing together companies that are pioneering the development of new ways to make and apply electronics and to: • P  rovide a voice for UK companies in this sector, many are SMEs that would benefit from a collective approach. • Represent and promote our sector in communications with key stakeholders: government and other public and industrial organisations.

• P  rovide a mechanism to support companies seeking to fill supply chain gaps using the unique experience of its sponsoring members (CPI, CIMLAE and the KTN). • Facilitate access to funding and investment. Industry Day attracted companies from across the LAE supply chain, with the majority of delegates from SMEs, reflecting the current status of this emerging industry. Delegate feedback on the event was very positive with over 95% agreeing that their attendance was worthwhile and the networking opportunity was judged the most useful aspect of the day. The event was followed up through questionnaires and an online survey which found strong support (>80%) for the creation of eMergent with possibilities for networking and information sharing being particularly valued. However, responses divided on whether industry would be prepared to pay to support this organisation and discussions are continuing with CPI on how such an organisation could be most effectively supported.

“We expected to meet some development partners and we were VERY successful” – industry day delegate “Good to see what needs are being expressed by industry” – industry day delegate

Industry Day company type Govt (2) Academic (5)

Other (1) Micro (6)

RTO (2) SME (34)

LSE (15)

Industry Day supply chain End-users (5)

Device/design/ process (14)

Other (3) Research (6)

Service provider (7) Systems/ integrators (7)

Materials/ substrates (12) Equipment/ characterisation (11)

"Very interesting for an Original Equipment Manufacturer like us. I look forward to learning more about the LAE industry” – industry day delegate

OUTREACH AND NETWORKING

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Large-area electronics FlexBook demonstrator In 2015, the EPSRC Centre held a design competition with product design students at Central St Martins, University of the Arts London. Students submitted product concepts that would display the power and flexibility of LAE in an easyto-use, attractive and compelling way. We have now developed a working demonstrator based on the concept of an ‘Interactive Sample Book’ – an A4sized portfolio which contains pages featuring printed functional elements that allow the user to interact with the page. This will be used as a communications tool to illustrate the capabilities of LAE to potential customers, end-users, designers, trade associations, public agencies and other communities interested in the new technology. The FlexBook has come together as a collaborative effort between the Centre and industrial partners who each contributed working examples of their technology for the demonstrator - Cambridge Display Technology, FlexEnable, PragmatIC, Printed Electronics Limited, Peratech, PST Sensors and the Centre for Process Innovation (part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult).

46

Networking events As well as hosting visits from national and international organisations, presenting at conferences and participating in UK and international events, the Centre organises its own events to disseminate research results and engage with industry. As explored in detail on page 26, research projects supported by the Centre use workshops and networking events to incorporate industrial engagement into the research process. In 2017 the Centre ran 3 workshops: Advanced Rheology for Printed Electronics (to inform the work of the P2CAR project); Adhesion Lithography (to shape the PLANALITH4Manufacture project) and Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing in connection with the ITAPPE project. Each of these workshops created a space for the academic team to share and discuss their latest research findings with industrial representatives from varying positions along the supply chain - highlighting overlapping interests and motivating direct involvement from industry in future work. In turn, the setting allowed industry to inform future research priorities by identifying the challenges to wider deployment and use.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Partnerships The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI), one of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult Centres, supports the growth of large-area electronics by offering SMEs the possibility to scale up their manufacturing with industrially-compatible tools, materials and processes at the National Centre for Printable Electronics in Sedgefield, UK. The EPSRC Centre and CPI are collaborating in innovate UK funded projects and on the interactive demonstrator, provide mutual support to their respective advisory boards and participate in workshops and initiatives organised by the centres. Through this strategic partnership, we are positioned to offer UK academics an opportunity to test their ideas and research outputs, assess and mature the corresponding technology readiness level and start the journey towards industrial scale up. The Centre is always open to meet with other research teams to explore opportunities for collaboration in one of the areas of its technical programme or discuss new technology or application fields.

Vision: Innovation through HVM Lead commercialiser Results of feasibility projects, e.g. new materials, process, new device architecture

New product concepts, new equipment, industrial process ready for scale-up

EPSRC Centre and Partners

EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics 2016

2016

Centre-funded projects, collaborative projects

TRL 1

Reduced risk to HVM Catapult Reduced risk to the value chain

Universities

Scale-up of academic research

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

OUTREACH AND NETWORKING

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Our people

48

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Chris Rider Centre Director

Dr Mark Leadbeater Programme Manager

Dr Luigi Occhipinti National Outreach Manager

Cara Daneel Centre Coordinator

Dr Philip Cooper Special Projects

OUR PEOPLE

49


Co-Investigators Professor Thomas Anthopoulos

Professor Tim Claypole College of Engineering and Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating, Swansea University

Department of Physics, Imperial College London and Physical Science and Engineering Division, KAUST

Professor David Gethin

Professor Andrew Flewitt

College of Engineering and Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating, Swansea University

Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge

Professor Andrew Holmes ITAPPE

Professor Arokia Nathan

Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Imperial College London

Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge

Professor Krishna Persaud

Professor Henning Sirringhaus

School of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science, University of Manchester

Professor Natalie Stingelin

Professor Mike Turner

Department of Materials, Imperial College London and School of Materials Science and Engineering, Georgia Tech

School of Chemistry and Organic Materials Innovation Centre, University of Manchester

Professor Rhodri Williams Centre for Complex Fluids Processing, College of Engineering, Swansea University

50

Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge

Professor Stephen Yeates School of Chemistry, University of Manchester

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Project Investigators

Dr David Beynon SIMLIFT WCPC, College of Engineering, Swansea University

Dr Davide Deganello

Dr Dan Curtis P2CAR

SIMLIFT

Complex Fluids Research Group, College of Engineering, Swansea University.

WCPC, College of Engineering, Swansea University

Dr Robert Donnan IQ-PET

Dr Guangbin Dou ITAPPE Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Imperial College London

School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science, Queen Mary University of London

Professor Bob Stevens

Dr Frances Edwards

Dr John Hardy

MFBBN

MFBBN

Department of Neuroscience, Physiology & Pharmacology, University College London

Department of Chemistry and Materials Science Institute, Lancaster University

Dr Bin Yang

IQ-PET

IQ-PET

School of Science & Technology, Nottingham Trent University

Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, University of Chester

OUR PEOPLE

51


Researchers Dr James Claypole

Dr Sheida Faraji

P2CAR

iPESS

WCPC, College of Engineering, Swansea University

Suresh Garalpati

Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC), University of Manchester

Dr Dimitra Georgiadou

iPESS

PLANALITH

Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC), University of Manchester

Blackett Laboratory, Imperial College London.

Dr Alex Holder

Dr Punarja Kevin

P2CAR

MFBBN

Centre for Complex Fluids, College of Engineering, Swansea University

Dr Kang Moon

School of Chemistry, Lancaster University

Dr Iyad Nasrallah

iPESS

iPESS

Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge

Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge

Dr James Semple PLANALITH Department of Physics, Imperial College London.

Dr Daniel Tate iPESS Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC), University of Manchester.

Students

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John Armitage

Shengyang Chen

Doctoral Candidate at the Cavendish Laboratory in the Optoelectronics Group of the University of Cambridge.

Postgraduate Research Student in the Centre for Plastic Electronics (CPE), Imperial College London.

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


Pelumi Oluwasanya

Edward Tan

PhD student in the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge.

PhD student in the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge.

Vanessa Tischler

Gwenhivir Wyatt- Moon

PhD-student at Organic Materials Innovation Centre (OMIC), University of Manchester.

PhD Student in the Experimental Solid State Physics group at Imperial College London

Steering Group Dr Jeremy Burroughes

Dr Neil Chilton

Cambridge Display Technology Ltd.

Printed Electronics Limited (PEL)

Dr Tom Harvey

Dr Natasha Conway

Centre for Process Innovation (CPI)

Beko

Professor Don Lupo

Dr Richard Price

Tampere University of Technology

PragmatIC Ltd

Professor Martin Taylor

Professor Ian Underwood

Bangor University

University of Edinburgh

OUR PEOPLE

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Collaborate with us

54

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


How we work The EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in LargeArea Electronics funds core science and technology development from Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 1 to 3 at the four Partner Universities of the Centre: Cambridge, Manchester, Swansea and Imperial College London. Our core projects target key large-area electronics manufacturing challenges in system integration and advanced manufacturing processes. Smaller Pathfinder projects enable us to fund feasibility projects at other leading academic groups in the UK. We also work with several Doctoral Training Centres (DTCs) to co-supervise PhD student research in LAE. Building on this research base, we collaborate with industry in higher TRL projects funded through public sources such as Innovate UK or Horizon 2020 to develop technology further or to facilitate technology transfer. We also work with industry on company-funded projects. Our key downstream partner is CPI (Centre for Process Innovation), part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, with its scale-up capabilities in LAE.

Why collaborate with us? Each member of our Operations’ team has many years’ industrial experience in leading research and development teams, protecting intellectual property, setting up research collaborations and providing technology for commercialisation. Our Investigator team brings together diverse expertise and facilities from the four largest academic groups in the field of large-area electronics in the UK, covering materials (organic and inorganic), devices (light-emitting, photovoltaics, sensors, transistors, diodes etc) and processes (contact printing, non-contact digital deposition etc). Several of them were among the early pioneers in the field and many have experience of commercialisation through spinout companies, and between them; they have close connections to six Centres for Doctoral Training.

Benefits of working with us to: Industry

• L  everage EPSRC funding to reduce your innovation risk. Talk to us about how our core project portfolio might benefit your business or let us know what your unmet innovation needs in large-area electronics might be. • Let us help you define and place a PhD studentship with access to the broader Centre facilities. •  Gain access to resources at our four University Partners’ locations and benefit from collaborating with key UK academic groups through one organisation. Academia • Join our community and be at the forefront of innovative research and new technologies. • Hear about the latest developments and publicise your own. •  Attend our events and meet other researchers working in large-area electronics. • Connect with industrial partners looking to be part of the large-area electronics value chain. • Collaborate with us in research projects and partner with us in the dissemination of large-area electronics research results.

How to engage with us Our research programme is strongly influenced by industry input and as such we are always looking for industry partners to take part in collaborative projects that leverage our expertise. As a national outreach centre for the LAE community, we would be pleased to facilitate discussions regarding relevant funding calls, and help identify possible teaming partners with a particular expertise. You can engage with us in a number of ways: • Sponsor a PhD student on a topic of interest to your organisation. • Work with us using KTP or other exchange schemes. • Secondment of EPSRC staff to work in your organisation.

• Accelerate knowledge transfer and partnership development by working with us in collaborative R&D projects tailored to your needs, accessing available funding schemes.

• Sponsor a student project.

•  Get early access to emerging research results.

• Join a multi-company technology programme.

• Collaborate with us on an Innovate UK or Horizon 2020 or other publicly-funded project.

• T  alk to us about the technology readiness of emerging academic research and we will help you to identify next steps in its development for commercial use.

COLLABORATE WITH US

55


Our partners

Industry partners supporting centre projects

56

EPSRC CENTRE FOR INNOVATIVE MANUFACTURING IN LARGE-AREA ELECTRONICS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017


UK academic partners

Centre university partners

Sponsored by

OUR PARTNERS

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Contact us Electrical Engineering Division University of Cambridge 9 JJ Thomson Avenue Cambridge, CB3 0FA info@largeareaelectronics.org www.largeareaelectronics.org +44 1223 332838

EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics - Annual Report (2017)  

Our Annual Report for 2017 provides an overview of our projects - the progress, challenges and current & future opportunities for collaborat...

EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large-Area Electronics - Annual Report (2017)  

Our Annual Report for 2017 provides an overview of our projects - the progress, challenges and current & future opportunities for collaborat...

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