Surface engineering
Printed electronics & sensors
Printable electronics is a set of emerging technologies that includes new materials, process equipment, and devices. The approach is based on additive manufacturing and makes large area, lightweight, flexible, distributed electronics a reality. Using equipment evolved from the world of traditional printing, printed electronics offers the potential for the large-scale implementation of devices such as life-science sensors; smart, integrated systems; and lighting and displays with alternative form factors. The processes involved can lead to superior performance; customizable, on-demand automated production; reduced environmental impact; and lower costs, when used on a large scale.

CSEM’s printable electronics activities are broad, covering a large spectrum of competences in materials and devices. This gives us the flexibility needed to address very different customer requirements. We offer a flexible, industry-oriented generalist facility that helps Swiss companies contribute to and benefit from this emerging field. By offering a proof-of-concept and prototyping lab environment and by manufacturing prototypes and small series of printable electronic systems, we are able to demonstrate relevant applications in markets with a significant potential for fast and widespread adoption.

Our work focuses on printing and solution process technologies for patterned photodiodes, organic transistors, and sensors. We use the interplay of these technologies to optimize system performance, combining them with CSEM’s nano- and biosurface engineering activities. These activities involve integrating optical microtechnologies to develop advanced light management solutions and make possible novel design concepts for integrated sensing systems; developing and experimentally verifying simulation tools for predicting the performance of electronic circuits containing organic field effect transistors; and, finally, the combination of nano-imprint lithography with printed electronics. Our process level is sheet-to-sheet and our facilities support process development with equipment compatible with mass manufacturing.

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