Laser Printed Organic Electronic Materials

Organic electronic materials have the potential for general incorporation into consumer technologies. The materials are versatile and can be used at low cost to help build next generation large-area, flexible electronics. Electrographic laser printing is introduced for the first time as a highly effective, ultra-low cost, low-temperature, solvent-free alternative to labor-intensive processes currently used to manufacture electronic devices.

Problem

Traditional solution-based methods for depositing organic semiconductor materials on electronic devices involve roll-to-roll manufacturing, ink-jet printing, spray-coating, etc. While these techniques are associated with cost savings and reductions in manufacturing complexity, their efficacy is limited by the use of harmful solvents coupled with deficiencies in control of performance film uniformity, and, in some cases, limited scalability. A high throughput, solvent-free deposition method that yields high performance is needed to expand the use of organic semiconductor materials into large-area electronics and consumer applications.

Solution

Scientists at Wake Forest University have invented a novel method for depositing organic semiconductor composition materials using electrographic laser printing.

This unique approach combines the speed of commercial laser printing with the low temperature, ultra-low cost processing of organic semiconductors, enabling deposition on flexible substrates, such as plastic, fabric or paper, without the use of environmentally hazardous solvents.

Rather than conventional solution processing techniques, film deposition occurs via a melt phase, resulting in performance improvements and enhanced control of structural properties. In addition, deposition, patterning and purification occur simultaneously, significantly reducing processing costs and complexity. The result is an environmentally safe, high throughput technique applicable to manufacturing virtually any electronic device.

Competitive Benefits

  • First electrographic laser printing technique for organic semiconductors
  • Environmentally-friendly process does not use harmful solvents
  • Laser printing results in large volume, ultra-low cost production per unit area
  • Highly versatile and reproducible, with direct scalability from laboratory-based devices to large-area electronics
  • Method allows for enhanced control of structural properties
  • Results in time and performance efficiencies

Application Fields

Widespread applications for optoelectronics, flexible displays, electronic paper, sensors, disposable and wearable electronics, renewable energy sources and medical devices

Stage of Development

Functioning prototype field-effect transistors have been fabricated from organic semiconductor toner powder. Research is underway at Wake Forest into further device architectures, including organic photovoltaic and organic light emitting devices.

Inventor

Oana D. Jurchescu, PhD, Physics
Peter Diemer, Physics

Patents

Patent Pending

Licensing Contact

Peter Golikov, MS, MBA, CLP
Director of Licensing
pgolikov@wakehealth.edu
+1.336.713.1664

Reference #:16-20

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