Gravure roll printed electronics

Gravure-printed high-performance, high-throughput flexible electronics for low-cost, large-area applications

Among various printing technologies proposed for printed electronics, gravure printing, which is routinely used for high resolution, large-area printing such as currency, is one of the most suitable technology because of its high throughput, pattern fidelity and large-area printability. However, most of similar high-throughput roll printed transistors were reported to be showing poor performance (i.e. below kHz operation frequency) due to large printed features and thus significantly large parasitic capacitance. In my works, I developed attoliter-scale, high-resolution (sub 5 micron) pattern engraving on the gravure rolls using electromechanical engraving technique for MHz operation high-performance circuits on plastic substrate while printing at ~ 1 m/s.

With this technique incorporated with high mass loaded gold nanoparticle ink and high performance solution processed organic semiconductor, I was able to print p-type only inverters operating in MHz on flexible polyethylene naphthalate substrate, much superior to previously reported roll printed circuits with high printing throughput.
The knowledge developed in these works provides important insights for commercialization of printed electronics applications.

Related Publications & Presentations

    1. Hongki Kang, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Kurt Ulmer, Lisa Stecker, Gerd Grau, Jaewon Jang and Vivek Subramanian, “Megahertz-class printed high mobility organic thin-film transistors and inverters on plastic using attoliter-scale high-speed gravure-printed sub-5 μm gate electrodes,” ORGANIC ELECTRONICS, vol. 15, no. 12, pp. 3639–3647, Dec. 2014. (Link)
    2. Hongki Kang, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Jaewon Jang, and Vivek Subramanian, “High-performance printed transistors realized using femtoliter gravure-printed Sub-10μm metallic nanoparticle patterns and highly uniform polymer dielectric and semiconductor layers,” ADVANCED MATERIALS, vol. 24, no. 22, pp. 3065–3069, 2012. (Link)
    3. PhD dissertation: Gravure-printed Highly-scaled Organic Thin-film Transistors for Low-cost and Large-area Electronics
    4. Gerd Grau, Jialiang Cen, Hongki Kang, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, William Scheideler, and Vivek Subramanian, “Gravure-printed electronics: Recent progress in tooling development, understanding of printing physics, and realization of printed devices,” FLEXIBLE AND PRINTED ELECTRONICS, 1, 023002, 2016.(Link)
    5. Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Hongki Kang, Gerd Grau, William Scheideler, and Vivek Subramanian, “MHz-Range Fully Printed High-Performance Thin-Film Transistors by Using High-Resolution Gravure-Printed Lines,” ADVANCED ELECTRONIC MATERIALS, vol. 1, no. 12, Dec. 2015. (Link)
    6. Gerd Grau, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Sarah L Swisher, Hongki Kang, Vivek Subramanian, “Printed Transistors on Paper: Towards Smart Consumer Product Packaging,” ADVANCED FUNCTIONAL MATERIALS, vol. 24, no. 32, pp. 5067–5074, 2014. (Link)
    7. Alejandro de la Fuente Vornbrock, Donovan Sung, Hongki Kang, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, and Vivek Subramanian, “Fully gravure and ink-jet printed high speed pBTTT organic thin film transistors," ORGANIC ELECTRONICS, vol. 11, no. 12, pp. 2037-2044, DEC 2010. (Link)
    8. Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Hongki Kang, and Vivek Subramanian, “High Performance Organic TFTs Using High-Resolution Gravure Printed Electrodes,” Materials Research Society, Boston, US, Fall 2013.
    9. Gerd Grau, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Sarah Swisher, Hongki Kang, and Vivek Subramanian, “Printed Transistors on Paper: Towards Smart Consumer Product Packaging,” LOPE-C, Germany, June 2013.
    10. (Invited) Vivek Subramanian, Stephen J. S. Morris, Hongki Kang, and Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, “Modeling, Scaling, and Integration of Gravure Printing for Fast Switching Organic FETs,” Materials Research Society, Boston, US, Fall 2012.
    11. Hongki Kang, Alejandro de la Fuente Vornbrock, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, Jaewon Jang, and Vivek Subramanian, “Highly-Scaled Gravure Printed organic TFTs with 10 μm channel length on Plastic with 300 kHz operation,” Materials Research Society Spring 2012.
    12. Hongki Kang, Huai-Yuan Tseng, Rungrot Kitsomboonloha, and Vivek Subramanian, “High-performance printed organic transistors: Advances in printing techniques and processes,” 2012 Flexible Electronics & Displays Conference & Exhibition, Phoenix, AZ, Feb 6-9, 2012.