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First Demonstration of Inkjet-Printed Graphene Electronics


Inkjet technology has been a revolution. First, there is digital image printing, which has become faster and more flexible than anybody imagined (although not necessarily cheaper).

Then came 3D printing in which one layer of material is printed on top of another to build up a three dimensional objects. That's become a standard way to make complex prototypes while others are using it to 'print' different kinds of chocolates, creams and icings.

Then there are the groups who have added conducting polymers to the inks and used them to print circuits onto flexible substrates. These are being used to make everything from digital paper to disposable RFID tags. And they can be printed onto sheets of essentially any size, unlike conventional high performance circuitry which must be forged in exotic conditions inside multibillion dollar fabrication plants .

There is a problem however. Inkjet printed electronics underperform conventional integrated circuitry by a significant margin--printed thin film transistors are simply bigger and slower than silicon-based models. So the race is on to improve their performance.


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