Tuesday, 20 Aug 2019

Fraunhofer FEP presents high-performance roll-to-roll processing for flexible electronics

The Fraunhofer FEP and partners process a full 100-meter roll of flexible glass patterned with highly conductive ITO at a process temperature of 350°C

1 Jun 2017 | Editor

The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP have announced they will showcase a roll of flexible thin glass, which is coated with highly conductive ITO continuously on 100 meters with roll-to-roll technology for the first time at FLEX 2017, from June 19 – 22, 2017 in Monterey, USA.

Fraunhofer FEP has for many years been extending and improving their expertise especially in the field of roll-to-roll process development and vacuum coating. The research centre has use of a variety of research and development coating machines, and since 2015 the Fraunhofer FEP has acted as a centre of competence for flexible glass.

The Fraunhofer FEP said that thanks to the excellent process know how of their researchers and partners, ultra-thin glass can now be processed right from the roll. Resulting from this, a full 100-meter roll of flexible glass has been processed with highly conductive ITO at a process temperature of 350°C.

This was accomplished in cooperation with long-term partners Von Ardenne GmbH and Corning Inc.

According to the announcement this result had been achieved on the FOSA LabX 330 Glass. The roll-to-roll coating line for ultra-thin glass was recently installed. Since its installation it has been operated by both Fraunhofer FEP and the manufacturer of the equipment, Von Ardenne GmbH, in a number of joint development projects.

Fraunhofer FEP - Flexible rollable thin glass

Figure: Fraunhofer FEP - Flexible rollable thin glass

Dr. Manuela Junghähnel, coordinator of all thin-glass activities at Fraunhofer FEP, said, "This paves the way for coatings on flexible glass as a substrate, which can directly be implemented into applications."

Benefits and applications of rollable glass

Functionalized and curved surfaces made of glass or plastic, rollable displays, high-quality bended surfaces for architecture or interior design in automotive or luxury furniture sector – flexible materials with integrated functionalities are not just a technological trend but capture markets already. Pioneering ideas like fully featured, curved and high-class panels in cars or a touch remote control within the armrest of your design chair are close at hand. All these features could be sealed with haptic comfortable, scratch-resistant and anti-reflective glass.

A fundamental prerequisite for such applications is a suitable and flexible substrate material, which needs to fulfill appropriate characteristics and requirements. Flexible, ultra-thin glass offers the ideal basis e.g. for printed electronic devices. Flexible electronic devices need to be protected against water and oxygen in a reliable way. Glass offers that protection but in certain applications glass may not be used due to technical or regulatory limitations. Especially for those applications and devices flexible barrier films are the solution to be used. Both ultra-thin glass and permeation barrier films require a broad technical know how and particularly adjusted processes and technologies for successful processing and coating.

Source: Fraunhofer FEP

www.corning.com    www.fep.fraunhofer.de    www.vonardenne.biz   

About Von Ardenne

Von Ardenne develops and manufactures equipment for industrial coatings on materials such as glass, wafers, metal strip and polymer films. These coatings give the surfaces new functional properties and can be between one nanometer and a few micrometers thin, depending on the application. The coated materials are the basis for products such as architectural glass, solar modules or touch screens.

Von Ardenne is a leading provider of architectural glass coating equipment and coating systems for thin-film photovoltaics. The family-owned company with subsidiaries in China, Japan, Malaysia and the USA relies on customer proximity in order to offer ideal on-site service. Von Ardenne equipment is in operation in more than 50 countries around the world.

Source: Von Ardenne

About Fraunhofer FEP

Source: Fraunhofer FEP

About Corning

Corning Incorporated (www.corning.com) is the world leader in specialty glass and ceramics. Drawing on more than 160 years of materials science and process engineering knowledge, Corning creates and makes keystone components that enable high-technology systems for consumer electronics, mobile emissions control, telecommunications and life sciences.Our products include glass substrates for LCD televisions, computer monitors and laptops; ceramic substrates and filters for mobile emission control systems; optical fiber, cable, hardware & equipment for telecommunications networks; optical biosensors for drug discovery; and other advanced optics and specialty glass solutions for a number of industries including semiconductor, aerospace, defense, astronomy, and metrology.

Source: Corning

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