February 19, 2017 by Canadian Plastics
The total market for the plastic electronics sector is estimated to grow from US$26 billion in 2017 to US$69 billion in 2025, and will revolutionize consumer goods, a new report said.
The report, from UK-based Innovation DB, the world’s largest licensable IP technology database, concludes that “now is the time for the consumer electronics industry to adopt plastic electronics, as new devices are set to revolutionize parts of the industry. Benefits will include significantly lower costs, less material waste, lower energy consumption during manufacture, novel physical properties and increased sustainability.”
A small selection of smart phones and organic light-emitting diode (OLED) TVs using plastic electronics technology are commercially available, with more on the way, the study noted. “Working prototypes of roll-up screens and plastic electronic biosensors have been demonstrated,” it said. “Bendable smart phones, self-charging laptops and bio-tattoos are on the brink of entering the real world.”
The study also identified further application inroads for plastic electronics, including OLEDs, which currently dominate the commercial environment, with possible applications in smart contact lenses to monitor blood glucose levels, augmented reality and vision correction;
organic thin-film transistors, which can make possible electronic skin, back-of-hand fitness trackers and smart skin (instead of a smart watch); and organic photovoltaics that enable the creation of inexpensive, lightweight and flexible solar cells.
Plastic electronics use organic semiconducting materials to create electronic devices, enabling circuits to be deposited or printed onto almost any surface or material, both rigid and flexible.
A summary of the report can be read at this link.