3021

Method for fabricating electrical conductive patterns and metal coating of 2D and 3D objects

Magdassi Shlomo, HUJI, Faculty of Science, The Institute of Chemistry

Novel ink and process for metal-coated and conductive 3D objects

Categories

3D Printing, Nanoparticles, Nanoprocesses, Nano Materials and Nano Structures, Coatings, Printed Electronics

Development Stage

Proof of concept and laboratory demonstration

Patent Status

PCT filed

Highlights

  • Ink composed of sub-micrometer particles of a metal precursor is printed on a donor substrate, and upon its decomposition, the metal is transferred to an acceptor substrate.
  • Reactive transfer printing (RTP) of copper involves printing a pattern (“donor pattern”) on a substrate (“donor substrate”) using an ink composed of a copper precursor.
  • The printing can be performed by various methods, such as screen, inkjet or fountain-pen printing, depending on the required resolution.
  • A second substrate (“acceptor substrate”) of materials such as glass or plastic is placed in parallel to the donor pattern.
  • Both substrates are then heated in a nitrogen atmosphere.
  • The decomposition of the donor pattern results in the transfer of the pattern from the donor substrate to the acceptor substrate, producing a copper pattern that is the mirror image of the donor pattern.

Our Innovation

New copper ink and a new method, reactive transfer printing (RTP), for patterning a metal on 2D and 3D substrates

 

 3d_1.jpg

 

Schematic representation of Reactive Transfer Printing A) The donor substrate with printed pattern. B) An acceptor substrate is placed above the donor substrate, with a gap between them maintained by a spacer. C) The two substrates after decomposition, showing the pattern obtained on the acceptor substrate. D) The pattern obtained on the acceptor substrate flipped right-side up

 

 3d_2.jpg

 

Copper electrode printed on a plastic substrate (PEN). Pictures were taken during a flexibility test. The sample can undergo more than one thousand bending cycles with as little as 50% increase in resistance

 

Key Features

  • Main advantages of the new ink and process:
  • Overcomes the oxidation of copper, a major problem in utilizing inks based on copper nanoparticles;
  • Enables the printing of conductive patterns on 3D objects, including printing over sharp angles;
  • Since the pattern is formed by the direct crystallization of copper atoms, a very dense layer of copper with high conductivities (up to 50% that of bulk copper) is obtained with no need for post-printing steps such as sintering;
  • The ink preparation is very simple, based on common technologies utilized in the paint industry.

 

New Development Milestones

  • Tailoring the process to lower temperatures to fit low cost plastics
  • Evaluate the effect of process parameters on conductivities obtained and adhesion to various substrates

 

The Opportunity

  • The total market for printed, flexible and organic electronics is projected to grow from $16.04 billion in 2013 to $76.79 billion in 2023. The majority of that is OLEDs (organic but not printed) and conductive ink used for a wide range of applications.
  • This new process for the deposition of conducting patterns for new printed electronic devices has the advantage of being non-contact, eco-friendly, low cost (no need for expensive facilities), and scalable.

Researcher Information 

http://chem.ch.huji.ac.il/casali/magdassi/magdassi.htm

 

 

Contact for more information:

Eitan Dekel
VP Business Development - Computer Science
+972-2-6586692
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