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Market Research Report

Conductive Ink Markets 2017-2027: Forecasts, Technologies, Players

Published by IDTechEx Ltd. Product code 235628
Published Content info 456 Pages, 18 Tables, 278 Figures
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Conductive Ink Markets 2017-2027: Forecasts, Technologies, Players
Published: February 22, 2017 Content info: 456 Pages, 18 Tables, 278 Figures

The conductive ink market will be in excess of 1,900 tonnes in 2017.

This report provides the most comprehensive and authoritative view of the 1900 tpa conductive inks and paste market, giving detailed ten-year market forecasts segmented by application and material type. The market forecasts are given in tonnage and value at the ink level.

It includes critical reviews of all the competing conductive inks and paste technologies including firing-types pastes, PTFs, laser-cut or photo-patterned pastes, nanoparticles, stretchable inks, in mold inks, copper, copper/silver alloys, nanocarbons, and more. Here, we outline the latest performance levels/progress, technology challenges, key suppliers, existing and emerging target market, and forecasts where appropriate.

It also provides a detailed assessment of more than 25 application sectors. Here, we analyse the market needs/requirements, discuss the business dynamics, market leadership and technology change trends, competing solutions, latest product/prototype launches, key players and market forecasts in tonnes and value.

The markets covered include photovoltaics, touch screen edge electrodes, automotive (defoggers, seat occupancy sensors, seat heaters, etc), In mold electronics (automotive, home appliance, etc_, Electronic textile and wearable electronics, 3D antennas and conformal printing, EMI Shielding, 3D printed electronics, ITO replacement (hybrid, direct printing, etc), printed piezoresistive, capacitive and bio sensors, PCB (DIY/hobbyist, professional, seed-and-plate), RFID (HF, UHF), printed TFT and memory, OLED and large-area LED lighting, flexible e-readers and reflective displays, large-area heaters (battery, plant, seat, etc), conductive pens, digitizers and more.

In the report we also cover more than 130 companies. For most, we provide insights based on primary intelligence obtained through interviews, visits, conference exhibition interactions, personal communications, and so on. For more than 50 we provide full interview-based company profiles including a detailed SWOT analyst and IDTechEx Index. These company provides provide value insight to company positioning, strategy, opportunities, and challenges.

Unrivalled market intelligence and insight

This report is based upon years of research. In the past five years alone, our analysts have interviewed more than 100 industry players, visited numerous users/ suppliers across the world, attended more than 20 relevant conferences/exhibitions globally, and worked with many industry players to help them with their strategy towards this market. For example, last year alone we visited 10 tradeshows in Japan, USA, Taiwan, Korea, Germany, UK and so on to update our report. Prior to this, our analysts played an active role in commercializing conductive pastes, particularly in the photovoltaic industry.

In parallel to this, IDTechEx has organised the leading global conferences and tradeshows on printed electronics for the past decade in Asia, Europe and USA. These shows bring together the entire value chain on printed electronics, including all the conductive ink suppliers, printers, and end users. This has given us unrivalled access to the players and the latest market intelligence.

In search of the next big thing

The conductive ink industry is still in search of the next big thing. Adverse competitive pressures in core volume markets has led most suppliers to seek new nascent opportunities. The prevalent strategy is now to have as broad a product portfolio as possible, seeding multiple nascent markets, garnering as much customer feedback as possible, and establishing value networks early on.

Suppliers also now intensely watch one another, rapidly launching comparable products which results in an erosion of differentiation. This puts suppliers in a bind: on the one hand, they want to keep technologies secret for long to perfect them in-house, but, on the other hand, they must take it to the market early because they crave customer feedback in new markets where neither the figures-of-merit nor customer needs are well known.

Despite all this, the industry has identified multiple emerging applications areas in the 2013-2016 period as it seeks to rejuvenate itself.

Changing business landscape

The volume photovoltaic market will do well in the first half of 2017 thanks to the looming end of feed-in-tariff in China. This will spell good news for paste and powder suppliers, however the industry will remain concerned that it may reach peak silver consumption soon in this highly cost competitive market that sees only incremental innovation.

The touch screen edge electrode market continues to be shaped by the perennial trend to narrow the bezel. This trend has already led to the introduction of new photo-patterned and laser-cut pastes to achieve L/S of 20/20. Such ink innovations have so far enabled printing to stay competitive, but the industry remains concerned here too that sputtering will become even more of a threat in the coming years as the L/S shrinks further.

New growth opportunities emerge

The behind-the-scenes interest in in-mold electronics (IME) remains robust. In fact the industry is on the cusp of success after several false starts. The first wave of products are close to market launch, the value networks are being enhanced, and the volume manufacturers are more engaged than ever.

The number of stretchable pastes keeps on increasing. Two years or so ago only a few suppliers offered such inks but in the past quarter alone we have interacted with at least ten suppliers. More ink-based e-textile products are being launched but volumes remain small and the value chain weak. The industry however has increasing momentum as it searches for its first major success story.

Aerosol and other non-contact printing processes are now a major contender for printing antennas and other conductive traces on 3D objects. The production capacity now exists, particularly in Asia and many material suppliers have qualified their products with these process. Commercial progress is set continue here.

EMI shielding is emerging as new area of interest. We expect the number of chips with conformal EMI shielding coatings on consumer electronics to rapidly increase. The competition will be between sputtering and ink spraying, and within inks the competition will be on particle size with nano inks offering thinness whilst others offer lower costs.

Directly printed metal mesh films with linewidths below 5um are now possible, although most prototypes still in the pilot phase. Nonetheless, they represent a long-term risk to other metal mesh processes in an increasingly cost-sensitive industry. Several silver nanoparticle TCF technologies have lost commercial momentum, but new novel ones are emerging to take their place. Hybrid solutions also continue with their stop-start commercial progress.

In the automotive industry applications such as printed seat occupancy sensors, printed capacitive sensors for infotainments modules, and seat heaters will largely continue their progress. The efforts to develop and commercially print window de-foggers on polycarbonate substrates will also intensify, whilst printed metal mesh for window de-foggers will appear on the early-stage technology roadmap of major OEMs.

3D printed electronics (3DPE) remains an innovation opportunity front. The number of dedicated 3DPE printers is set to rise whilst ink suppliers will develop low-temperature inks compatible with a variety of substrates. Hobbyist/DIY PCB printers will see diminished interest as the buzz dissipates, whilst printers aimed at the professional end of the market slowly will penetrate the market. The seed-and-plate PCB approach will become more technologically mature but will struggle to find a sufficient cost advantage to force a widespread switch.

Printed large-area piezoresistive, capacitive and biosensors are set to become one of the largest constituents of the greater printed electronics industry. Here, inks will be used as printed bus bars and interconnects. Despite technology improvements, printed transistor and memory will remain in search of applications. Special formulations for printed backplane interconnects on flexible e-readers and flexible displays will see small boom in the short- to medium-term. Large-area LED arrays made with printing will slowly find their way into the market although competition from FPCB remains whilst the primary challenge will be developing and selling end lighting products.

There are numerous other applications that are being developed for conductive paste which we consider in our report in detail. Examples include heating, battery pack and plant heaters, frequency-selective windows, and many more.

Nobody wants to be left behind

These markets however represent the future growth opportunities. Indeed, as shown below, IDTechEx Research forecasts that these emerging sectors will grow to nearly become a $400m market opportunity by 2027.

The ship is sailing now and nobody wants to be left behind. This is why companies are now allocating resources, iterating formulations, and development commercial ecosystems. This is why the conductive ink business has come alive again.

To learn more about this industry please purchase this report.

Market growth opportunity for conductive inks and pastes in
emerging sectors. Here, volume applications like
touch screen edge electrodes, automotive (exterior),
photovoltaics are excluded.

                  Source: IDTechEx Research report "Conductive Inks 2017-2027", report contains exact values.

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Table of Contents

Table of Contents


  • 1.1. Conductive inks and paste: everything is changing
  • 1.2. Traditional Markets
    • 1.2.1. Photovoltaics
    • 1.2.2. Touch screen market
    • 1.2.3. Automotive
    • 1.2.4. Sensors
  • 1.3. RFID
  • 1.4. Emerging applications
    • 1.4.1. 3D antennas
    • 1.4.2. ITO replacement
    • 1.4.3. Stretchable inks
    • 1.4.4. Desktop PCB printing
    • 1.4.5. 3D Printed Electronics


  • 2.1. PTF vs Firing Paste
  • 2.2. Curing and sintering
  • 2.3. Value chain
  • 2.4. Silver nanoparticle inks
  • 2.5. Silver nanoparticle inks are more conducting
  • 2.6. Curing temperature of silver nanoparticle inks
    • 2.6.1. Enhanced Flexibility
    • 2.6.2. Inkjet Printability
  • 2.7. Price competiveness of silver nanoparticles
  • 2.8. Performance of silver nanoparticle
  • 2.9. Value chain



  • 4.1. Methods of preventing copper oxidisation
    • 4.1.1. Superheated steam
    • 4.1.2. Reactive agent metallization
    • 4.1.3. Photocuring and photosintering
  • 4.2. Pricing strategy and performance of copper inks and pastes
  • 4.3. Copper oxide nanoparticles
  • 4.4. Silver-Coated Copper


  • 5.1. Background to the PV industry
  • 5.2. The return of the boom and bust to the PV sector?
  • 5.3. Massive Chinese investments buoys the market
  • 5.4. Conductive pastes in the PV sectors
  • 5.5. Alternative and improved metallization techniques
  • 5.6. Silicon inks
  • 5.7. Copper metallization in solar cells
  • 5.8. Trends and changes in solar cell architecture
  • 5.9. Market dynamics
  • 5.10. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive paste in solar cells


  • 6.1. De-misters or de-foggers
  • 6.2. Laser transfer printing as a new process?
  • 6.3. Metal mesh for rear window de-frosting
  • 6.4. Car seat heaters
  • 6.5. Seat sensors


  • 7.1. Progress in 3D printed electronics
    • 7.1.1. Nascent Objects
    • 7.1.2. Voxel8
    • 7.1.3. nScrypt ad Novacentrix
  • 7.2. University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
  • 7.3. Nagase
  • 7.4. Ten-year market projections for conductive inks and pastes in 3D printed electronics


  • 8.1. Narrow bezels change the market
  • 8.2. Ten-year market projections for conductive inks and paste in the touch screen industry


  • 9.1. RFID market size and business dynamics
  • 9.2. Processes, Material Options and Market Shares
  • 9.3. Market projections


  • 10.1. Piezoresistive
  • 10.2. Glucose sensors
  • 10.3. Capacitive sensors


  • 11.1. Laser Direct Structuring and MID
  • 11.2. Aerosol deposition
  • 11.3. Others ways of printing structurally-integrated antennas
  • 11.4. Market projections for printed 3D antennas


  • 12.1. Automotive
  • 12.2. Definition of terms
  • 12.2. In mould electronics in consumer electronics
  • 12.3. Ink requirements in in-mould electronics
  • 12.4. Suppliers of IME inks rapidly multiply
  • 12.5. Other materials used in in-mould electronics
    • 12.5.1. IME PEODT
    • 12.5.2. IME Carbon nanotubes
    • 12.5.3. IME Metal mesh
  • 12.6. Market forecasts for IME conductive inks


  • 13.1. Electronic textile industry
  • 13.2. Stretchable inks: general observations
  • 13.3. Stretchable e-textile inks multiply
  • 13.4. Performance of stretchable conductive inks
  • 13.5. Future performance improvements for stretchable inks
  • 13.6. The role of particle size and resin in stretchable inks
  • 13.7. The role of pattern design in stretchable conductive inks
  • 13.8. Washability for stretchable conductive inks
  • 13.9. Encapsulant choice for stretchable inks
  • 13.10. The role of the substrate in stretchable inks
  • 13.11. Applications of inks in e-textiles
  • 13.12. Examples of products with conductive yarns
  • 13.13. Graphene as a stretchable e-textile conductive ink
  • 13.14. PEDOT as a conductive e-textile material
  • 13.15. Market projections for stretchable conducive inks



  • 15.1. Background to the PCB industry
  • 15.2. ‘Printing' PCBs for the hobbyist and DIY market
  • 15.3. ‘Printing' professional multi-layer PCBs
  • 15.4. Progress on seed-and-plate PCBs
  • 15.5. Comparison of different PCB techniques


  • 16.1. Market forecast for transparent conductive films
  • 16.2. Changing market requirements
  • 16.3. A brutal consolidation set in but has now ended?
  • 16.4. Progress and opportunities for conductive inks
    • 16.4.1. Embossing followed by silver nanoparticle printing
    • 16.4.2. Self-assembled silver nanoparticle films
    • 16.4.3. Inkjet printed silver nanoparticles as transparent conducting films
  • 16.5. Direct printing of fine line metal mesh
  • 16.6. Printing of metal mesh TCF using photo-patterned conductive pasts
  • 16.7. Direct screen printing of metal mesh films for ultra large area displays
  • 16.8. UV patterned silver nanoparticle based metal mesh
  • 16.9. Ultra fine nanometer scale printed metal mesh
  • 16.10. Market Projections




  • 19.1. OLED Lighting market dynamics and challenges
  • 19.2. OLED lighting in search of a unique
  • 19.3. Cost projections of OLED lighting
  • 19.4. OLED lighting market forecast
  • 19.5. Requirements from conductive inks in OLED lighting
  • 19.6. Market projections


  • 20.1. Why large-area LED array lighting
  • 20.2. Examples of LED array lighting
  • 20.3. Role of conductive inks in large-area LED arrays
  • 20.4. Competitive non-printed approach to making the base for large-area LED arrays


  • 21.2. Overall market situation for printed RFID logic
  • 21.3. Market for printed backplanes for displays
  • 21.4. Market for printed backplanes for large-area sensor arrays
  • 21.5. Latest progress with solution-processable metal oxides
  • 21.6. Latest progress with fully printed organic thin film transistor arrays
  • 21.7. The need for printed nanoparticle inks and the latest progress
  • 21.8. Market forecasts for silver nanoparticles in fully printed thin film transistors


  • 22.2. Applications of printed thin film memory
  • 22.3. The structure of printed memory and the role of printed conductors
  • 22.4. Market forecasts for conductive inks in printed memories


  • 23.1. Background to EMI shielding solutions
  • 23.2. Printing or spraying conductive paste as conformal EMI shielding
  • 23.3. Sputtering vs spraying for conformal EMI shielding
  • 23.4. Sputtering currently dominates but printing is a major medium-term future opportunity
  • 23.5. The challenge of magnetic shielding at low frequencies
  • 23.6. Value proposition for magnetic shielding using printed inks
  • 23.7. Market forecasts for conductive inks/pastes in consumer electronics EMI shielding?


  • 24.1. Nantennas
  • 24.2. Frequency-Selective Transparent Shielding Patterns


  • 25.1. The use of conductive inks in wearable e-reader devices
  • 25.2. Market forecasts for conductive inks in e-readers


  • 26.1. Battery Heaters
  • 26.2. Plant heaters


  • 27.1. Agfa-Gevaert N.V.
  • 27.2. AgIC
  • 27.3. Bando Chemical Industries
  • 27.4. BeBop Sensors
  • 27.5. BotFactory
  • 27.6. Cartesian Co
  • 27.7. Cima NanoTech Inc
  • 27.8. Clariant Produkte (Deutschland) GmbH
  • 27.9. ClearJet Ltd
  • 27.10. Colloidal Ink Co., Ltd
  • 27.11. Conductive Compounds
  • 27.12. Daicel Corporation
  • 27.13. DuPont
  • 27.14. DuPont Advanced Materials
  • 27.15. Electroninks Writeables
  • 27.16. Flexbright Oy
  • 27.17. Fujikura Kasei Co Ltd
  • 27.18. Genes 'Ink
  • 27.19. Henkel
  • 27.20. Hicel Co Ltd
  • 27.21. Inkron
  • 27.22. InkTec Co., Ltd
  • 27.23. Intrinsiq Materials
  • 27.24. Komori Corporation
  • 27.25. KunShan Hisense Electronics
  • 27.26. Lord Corp
  • 27.27. Methode Electronics
  • 27.28. Nagase America Corporation
  • 27.29. NanoComposix
  • 27.30. Nano Dimension
  • 27.31. NANOGAP
  • 27.32. Novacentrix
  • 27.33. O-film Tech Co., Ltd
  • 27.34. Optomec
  • 27.35. Perpetuus Carbon Technologies Limited
  • 27.36. Printechnologics
  • 27.37. Promethean Particles
  • 27.38. Pulse Electronics
  • 27.39. PV Nano Cell
  • 27.40. Raymor Industries Inc
  • 27.41. Showa Denko
  • 27.42. Sun Chemical
  • 27.43. Tangio Printed Electronics
  • 27.44. The Sixth Element
  • 27.45. T-Ink
  • 27.46. Toda Kogyo Corp
  • 27.47. Tokusen USA Inc.
  • 27.48. Ulvac Corporation
  • 27.49. UT Dots Inc
  • 27.50. Vorbeck Materials
  • 27.51. Voxel8
  • 27.52. Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC)
  • 27.53. Xymox Technologies


  • Agfa
  • AgIC
  • Ames Goldsmith
  • Amogreen (Korea)
  • Applied Nanotech (nano)
  • Asahi Glass Corporation (Cu)
  • Asahi Kasei Corporation
  • Ash Chemical
  • Bando Chemical Industries
  • Banishta
  • BeBop Sensors
  • BotFactory
  • Cambrios
  • Canatu
  • Chasm
  • Cima Nanotech
  • Clariant Produkte (Deutschland) GmbH
  • ClearJet Ltd
  • Clothing+
  • Colloidal Ink
  • Colloidal Ink Co., Ltd
  • Conductive Compounds
  • Creative Materials
  • Daejoo
  • Daicel Corporation
  • DIC
  • Dongin (Korea)
  • Dowa
  • Dream Inks
  • DuPont
  • Electroninks Writeables
  • EMS
  • ESL
  • Feetme
  • Ferro
  • Flexbright Oy
  • Fujifilm
  • Fujikura Kasei Co Ltd
  • Genes 'Ink
  • GGI International
  • Giga Solar
  • Gunma University
  • Gunze
  • Gwent
  • Hanyang University
  • Harima
  • Henkel
  • Heraeus
  • Hicel Co Ltd
  • Hitachi Chemical (Cu)
  • IEE
  • Inkron
  • InkTec Co., Ltd
  • Innovalight
  • Intrinsiq Materials
  • Jabil
  • JNC Corporation
  • Johnson Matthey
  • Jujo Chemical
  • Komori Corporation
  • Komura Tech
  • Konica Minolta
  • Kunshan Hisense Electronics Co., Ltd
  • LG Chem
  • Lord Corp
  • Lord Corporation
  • LPKF
  • Maxim Integrated
  • Methode Electronics
  • Methode Electronics
  • Microcontinium
  • Mimo
  • Mitsubishi Materials
  • Mitsui Mining and Smelting
  • Molex
  • Nagase
  • Namics
  • Nano Dimension
  • NanoComposix
  • Nanogram
  • Nascent Objects
  • National Research Council of Canada
  • Noritake
  • Novacentrix
  • nScrypt
  • O-film Tech Co., Ltd
  • Optomec
  • P.V. Nano Cell Ltd.
  • Panasonic
  • Perpetuus Carbon Technologies Limited
  • Polymatech
  • Poongsan
  • PPG Industries
  • Printechnologics
  • Promethean
  • Promethean Particles
  • Pucka Printed Electronics
  • Pulse Electronics
  • Pulse Electronics
  • PV Nano Cell
  • Raymor Industries Inc
  • RedWAve Energy
  • Samsung SDI
  • Shirai
  • Shoei
  • Showa Denko
  • SunChemical (DIC)
  • TactoTek
  • Taiyo
  • Tanaka Metal
  • Tangio Printed Electronics
  • Tatsutu
  • TF Massif
  • The Sixth Element
  • Thin Film Electronics
  • T-Ink
  • Toda Kogyo Corp
  • Tokusen USA Inc.
  • Tokyo University
  • Toray Industries
  • Ulvac Corporation
  • UT Dots Inc
  • Vorbeck Materials
  • Voxel8
  • Xenon
  • Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC)
  • Xymox Technologies



  • 2.1. These tables show the performance and processing conditions of screen-printable silver pastes.
  • 2.2. Table listing the key suppliers of metallic powders/flakes and conductive inks/paste.
  • 2.3. Performance and typical characteristics of various silver nanoparticle inks on the market.
  • 2.4. List of silver nanoparticle suppliers.
  • 4.1. List of companies supplying or researching copper or silver alloy powders, inks or pastes.
  • 4.2. The performance and key characteristics of copper inks and pastes offered by different companies
  • 9.1. Table outlining the operational frequency and main features of each RFID tag.
  • 9.2. Average sales price of passive RFID tags in USD cents
  • 13.1. The resistivity and loading levels of graphene inks by different graphene suppliers
  • 23.1. The table below shows which chips have EMI shielding and what method has been used to deposit them
  • 28.1. Screen Printable Silver Paste
  • 28.2. Other Silver Pastes
  • 28.3. Inkjet Printable Inks
  • 28.4. Applied Nanotech products
  • 28.5. Ferro's metal products
  • 28.6. Outline of Noritake product list
  • 28.7. Silver and carbon pastes offered by Toyobo
  • 28.8. Performance of Hitachi Chemical's inks compared to printed circuit board solutions


  • 1.1. Ten-year market forecasts in USD for all conductive inks and pastes split by 21 application areas
  • 1.2. Ten-year market forecasts in USD for all conductive inks and pastes split by application. PV excluded.
  • 1.3. Ten-year market forecasts in tonnes for all conductive inks and pastes split by application. PV included.
  • 1.4. Ten-year market forecasts in tonnes for all conductive inks and pastes split by application. PV excluded.
  • 1.5. Ten-year market forecast for micron-sized (non nano) conductive inks and pastes split by application
  • 1.6. Ten-year market forecasts for silver nanoparticle conductive inks and pastes split by application
  • 1.7. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in touch screens
  • 1.8. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in the automotive sector as de-foggers, seat heaters and occupancy sensors.
  • 1.9. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes as piezoresistive and glucose sensors.
  • 1.10. Conductive inks and pastes used in printing UHF RFID antennas in value and tonne
  • 1.11. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in 3D antennas
  • 1.12. Ten-year market forecasts for IME conductive inks and pastes in the automotive sector
  • 1.13. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in ITO replacement
  • 1.14. Ten-year market forecasts for stretchable conductive inks and pastes in e-textiles
  • 1.15. Ten-year market forecasts for stretchable conductive inks and pastes in 3D printed electronics.
  • 2.1. Different morphologies of micron-sized silver particulates used in conductive paste/ink making
  • 2.2. The process flow for making a conductive pastes.
  • 2.3. These charts show the curing behaviour of PTFTs using a box oven and UV heater.
  • 2.4. These charts show a typical firing profile for firing-type conductive pastes
  • 2.5. Typical equipment used in curing silver PTFs
  • 2.6. A roll-to-roll photosintering machine by Novacentrix
  • 2.7. A Xenon photosetting machine as well as its lamp
  • 2.8. SEM images of flake and spherical Ag pastes after heat and photo curing.
  • 2.9. Images comparing the packing of flake-based and nanoparticle-based conductive lines.
  • 2.10. Conductivity values of different sputtered and printed conductive materials.
  • 2.11. This measured data shows that silver nanoparticle inks can form lines that are both thinner and more conducting.
  • 2.12. Melting temperature as a function of gold particle size
  • 2.13. Current and projected roadmap for the curing temperature and resistivity level of silver nanoparticle inks.
  • 2.14. Data showing the thermal curing behaviour of silver nanoparticle inks. It is observed that silver nanoparticle inks require curing temperatures comparable to PTF pastes.
  • 4.1. Spot price of silver as a function of year
  • 4.2. The annealing method is a key step in creating conductive tracks from copper.
  • 4.3. Apparatus and process for curing printed copper lines using Toyobo's superheated steam.
  • 4.4. Creative copper conductive traces using reactive agent metallization
  • 4.5. Various photosintering machines
  • 4.6. Comparing an ideal silver-coated copper vs the ones typically produced.
  • 5.1. Left: price history of silicon PV cells. Right: price levels and production volumes of crystalline silicon PV. The price levels are now around 30 cents per watt or less.
  • 5.2. Price learning curve of c-Si and thin film PV technologies
  • 5.3. List of companies that went bankrupt, closed, restructured or sold equity at discount prices during the consolidation period.
  • 5.4. Shipped production for the top 10 suppliers of solar cells.
  • 5.5. The industry has dramatically changed over the years. US Japan and Europe have lost their leading positions at various times whereas Japan has risen.
  • 5.6. Production in GW of solar energy by China-Taiwan, Japan, Europe, North America and Row between 2005 and 2015
  • 5.7. The rise of China in the PV industry charted in terms of production, demand and market share.
  • 5.8. Comparing production volumes, measured in megawatts, of different solar cells technologies in 2013(red bars) and 2014 (blue bars).
  • 5.9. Cost breakdown of a typical wafer-based silicon solar cells.
  • 5.10. The cost of silver conductive paste as an overall portion of the energy-generation cost of a silicon PV (in cents per watt peak) as a function of time.
  • 5.11. Annual GW PV installation by year by region between 2005 to 2020
  • 5.12. Stock price of largest PV manufacturers worldwide
  • 5.13. Screen printed conductive lines on a typical wafer-based silicon PV.
  • 5.14. The production process for a silicon PV showing when metallization and curing (firing) takes place
  • 5.15. Typical curing profile of firing-type conductive pastes used in the photovoltaic industry.
  • 5.16. Silver content per cell as a function of time. These are IDTechEx projections and underpin our market forecasts. We are more conservative that industry projections on how much silver consumption per cell can be reduced. The techno
  • 5.17. Projections reductions in silver consumption per wafer by ITRPV over the years. The projections are for years 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. It demonstrates the difficulty in predicting future silver consumption per wafer even
  • 5.18. The reduction in the silver content is made by possible by innovation in inks.
  • 5.19. Survey results showing what the industry expected in the next decade
  • 5.20. Predicted trend for minimum as-cut wafer thickness
  • 5.21. Benefits of a silicon ink in improving solar cell efficiency
  • 5.22. Methods of plating the metallization layers: (1) thickening a screen printed Ag line with; (2) direct plating on Si.
  • 5.23. Current efficiency of select commercial PV modules.
  • 5.24. Market share of different silicon solar cell architectures/technologies
  • 5.25. Comparing the BSF and PERC cell architecture
  • 5.26. Ten-year market foreacsts for conductive inks/pastes in the PV industry in m$ and tonnes. Our forecasts model suggests that silver consumption will peak in late 2017 through to mid 2019.
  • 6.1. Existing and emerging use cases of conductive inks in the interior and exterior of cars
  • 6.2. Comparing the performance of a standard conductive paste as a de-froster when deposited on a PC and a glass substrate.
  • 6.3. Ten-year market forecast for conductive paste used in de-foggers
  • 6.4. Laser transfer printing process
  • 6.5. Structure of a typical printed seat heater
  • 6.6. PTC carbon inks with Ag bus bars to form a heater.
  • 6.7. Resistance vs temperature behaviour of a PTF carbon ink
  • 6.8. Ten-year market forecasts for the use of conductive inks (carbon plus silver) in car seat heaters
  • 6.9. Operation of a FSR
  • 6.10. Response curve of a typical FSR from IEE. Product name: CP 149 Sensor
  • 6.11. Examples of FSR individual sensors from IEE
  • 6.12. Ten-year market forecasts for the use of conductive inks and pastes as occupancy sensors in cars.
  • 7.1. Ten-year market projections for 3D printing materials split by SLA/DLP, extrusion, metal powder, binder jetting, etc.
  • 7.2. Plastic filaments used in 3D printing and suppliers thereof
  • 7.3. Plastic powders used in 3D printing and suppliers therefore
  • 7.4. Examples of embedded and metallized 3D printed objects.
  • 7.5. Nascent Objects seeks to modularize electronic components so that they can placed inside 3D printed objects and upgraded (exchanged) when new versions arrive
  • 7.6. A Voxel8 3D printed electronics machine
  • 7.7. A 3D printed electronics object with embedded circuitry
  • 7.8. A 3D printed quadcopter with 3D printed embedded circuit
  • 7.9. (Left) Photonically-cured copper in and (right) nScrypt's patented SmartPump
  • 7.10. nScrypt 3D printed electronic equipment. This is a highly stable hybrid 3DP extruder with a paste dispenser together with photonic curing for the conductive traces. The sales price is around $0.5m per machine. I took this photo at
  • 7.11. 3D printed electronics objects by University of Texas
  • 7.12. Performance sheet for Nagase Ag nano ink compatible with multiple plastic substrates and suitable for the 3DPE market.
  • 7.13. IDTechEx market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes
  • 8.1. Schematic of a touch screen system and a close-up of printed edge electrodes
  • 8.2. The process flow for patterning photo-patterned Ag conductive pastes by Toray (Raybrid)
  • 8.3. Table showing the linewidth resolution of various processes used in making touch screen bezels
  • 8.4. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in value split by touch screen device type
  • 8.5. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks and pastes in tonne split by touch screen device type
  • 9.1. Examples of RFID tags
  • 9.2. Typical examples of RFID antennas
  • 9.3. The approximate cost breakdown of different components in a typical UHF RFID tag
  • 9.4. RFID tag figures and ten-year forecasts by application in billion USD
  • 9.5. Cost estimates for making RFID antennas using different production processes
  • 9.6. A Suica transit card widely used in Japan's transport network. The antenna consist of a printed silver conductive track
  • 9.7. Comparing the printing speed, thickness and applications of different printing techniques
  • 9.8. Schematics of different printing processes used in RFID antenna production
  • 9.9. Examples of printed RFID antennas.
  • 9.10. Ten year market forecast for the use of conductive inks in UHF RFID antennas split by ink type.
  • 9.11. Ten year market forecast for the use of conductive inks in HF RFID antennas split by ink type.
  • 10.1. Typical construction and behaviour of piezoresistive force sensors.
  • 10.2. The IDTechEx market and technology roadmap for piezoresistive sensors
  • 10.3. Ten-year market projections for piezoresistive sensors at the device level
  • 10.4. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks/pastes in printed piezoresistive sensors by value and tonnes
  • 10.5. Different glucose test strips on the market.
  • 10.6. The anatomy of a glucose test strip. The working electrode here is carbon based
  • 10.7. Manufacturing steps of a Lifescan Ultra glucose test strip.
  • 10.8. Benchmarking printing vs. sputtering in glucose test strip product. Here, 5 refers to the strongest or highest.
  • 10.9. Printed glucose test trip market.
  • 10.10. Printed capacitive sensors used in automotive (infotainment module) and home appliance applications. Source: Polymatech. I took these photos at Nepcon Japan 2017
  • 10.11. Printed capacitive touch sensor unit aimed at first-class seats in passenger airplanes.
  • 10.12. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks/pasts in printed capacitive touch sensors in $m and tonnes
  • 11.1. Many components in a typical consumer electronics device such as a mobile phone are or can potentially be printed.
  • 11.2. Schematic showing the sales volume of phones.
  • 11.3. The production process using LDS.
  • 11.4. A typical smartphone antenna made using LDS.
  • 11.5. Examples of LDS products on the market.
  • 11.6. The aerosol deposition process and its key features.
  • 11.7. The core components making up an aerosol deposition machine
  • 11.8. Aerosol deposited 3D antennas directly on mobile phone components
  • 11.9. Comparing the LDS vs aerosol processes.
  • 11.10. (left) An antenna dispensing machine and (right) an antenna being printed (dispensed) directly on the phone case.
  • 11.11. Ten-year market projections for the use of conductive inks (silver nano inks) in printing 3D antennas.
  • 12.1. The process starts by printing on a flats or 3D substrate before being thermoformed into a 3D shape.
  • 12.2. Examples of use case of IME technology in the automotive industry
  • 12.3. Picture of an actual IME overhead console by T-Ink and DuPont
  • 12.4. AC control unit for cars using DuPont inks. This is not yet commercial but DuPont confirms that it has two products that are close to qualification. Source: DuPont, photo taken at the Wearable Expo Japan 2017
  • 12.5. Comparison of overhead control panels
  • 12.6. The formation of car overhead consoles using in-mould electronics is a multi-step process.
  • 12.7. Application ideas for the use of IME technology in consumer electronics
  • 12.8. A commercialized washing machine with an IME switch board
  • 12.9. Example of how in-mould electronics (here referred to as structural electronics) can result in the formation of simple and elegant designs.
  • 12.10. Schematic showing how TactoTek makes its structural or in-mould electronics.
  • 12.11. The inks formulated for IME are expected to withstand elongations as high as 60% without failure although the resistance does typically undergo change (e.g., 30% or so)
  • 12.12. These images demonstrate the impact of ink formulation on its performance after being stretched.
  • 12.13. Examples of IME inks by DuPont, T-Ink, Henkel, NRCC, Yoyobo, Fujikura Kasei and others
  • 12.14. The process for IME using PEDOT films
  • 12.15. Examples of IME PEDOT thermoformed films and some product demonstrators.
  • 12.16. Air conditioning controller unit for a car.
  • 12.17. Increase in resistance as a function of change in length.
  • 12.18. Examples of thermoformed products made using a CNT-on-PC film
  • 12.19. Examples of SWCNT and DWCNT films thermoformed into 3D shapes
  • 12.20. Example of a 3D-shaped IME dome made using Fujifilm's metal mesh technology
  • 12.21. Example of an IME 3D car touch screen using copper metal mesh and a thermoformed silver nanoparticle 3D surface
  • 12.22. Ten-year market projections for conductive inks/pastes in IME automotive applications in $m and tonnes
  • 12.23. Ten-year market projections for IME conductive inks in the home appliances in $m and tonnes
  • 13.1. Medium-term market projections for smart textiles.
  • 13.2. Some examples of prominent e-textile products are shown in this slide.
  • 13.3. Percentage of e-textile players using each material type
  • 13.4. Microcracks and voids appear in a printed conductive lines under stretch causing it to lose its conductivity.
  • 13.5. Stretchable inks containing only Ag flakes show great resistivity variations under stretch compared to inks containing a distribution of particle sizes.
  • 13.6. Printing a typical conductor on a fabric or textile is currently a four-step process
  • 13.7. Examples of stretchable e-textile conductive inks from (clockwise from top left) Jujo Chemical, Ash Chemical, Henkel, DuPont, and University of Tokyo.
  • 13.8. Examples of stretchable e-textile conductive inks
  • 13.9. Performance characteristics of conductive by Panasonic, Henkel, Fujikura Kasei, DuPont, EMS, Ash Chemical and so on.
  • 13.10. Comparing the performance of GenI and GenII of stretchable inks supplied by the same company to track industry evolutions.
  • 13.11. Table qualitatively showing how resin choice affects flexibility, adhesion strenght and heat resistance. Resins considered are acrylic, epoxy, pheno, polyester, urethane, silicone and polymide type
  • 13.12. SEM image showing a typical particle size distribution in a stretchable inks
  • 13.13. Change in resistance as a function of elongation for the same ink printed in different patterns
  • 13.14. Change of resistance as a function of washing cycles.
  • 13.15. TPU alternative being developed by Hitachi Chemical.
  • 13.16. The change in resistance with strain for the same ink printed on the same substrate with and without TPU encapsulation
  • 13.17. Effects of straining printed lines on different substrates. The different made by the choice of the substrate is visible with the naked eye as the strain range changes from 0 to 40%.
  • 13.18. Examples of wearable products employing conductive inks.
  • 13.19. Example of e-textile products and prototypes by Toyobo, Jujo Chemical and DuPont.
  • 13.20. Examples of e-textile products using printed conductive inks
  • 13.21. Examples of e-textile sports products made using conductive yarns.
  • 13.22. Examples of prototype of graphene inks on textile and graphene stretch sensors.
  • 13.23. Examples of graphene-including electronic textiles
  • 13.24. Examples of PEDOT used as a conductive e-textile materials
  • 13.25. Ten-year market projections for stretchable conductive inks in e-textiles in $m and tonnes
  • 14.1. Two examples of wearable devices on the right hand side
  • 14.2. stretchable printed circuit board following the rigid island and stretchable connector approach
  • 14.3. example of stretchable interconnects
  • 14.4. Example of printed flexible interconnects for cameras in fax machines (left) and stretchable printed interconnects for ECGs
  • 15.1. Left: example of pre-PCV electronics wit rats nest wiring. Right: example of early PCB.
  • 15.2. Examples of through-hole (left) and SMD PCB (right).
  • 15.3. Schematic using a typical construction of a double-layer (left) and multilayer (right) PCB.
  • 15.4. Breakdown of the PCB market by the number of layers
  • 15.5. Traditional PCBs are a mature technology
  • 15.6. Production steps involved in manufacturing a multi-layer PCB.
  • 15.7. PCB market by production territory
  • 15.8. PCB design files are often sent to the other side of the world to be manufactured and shipped back
  • 15.9. CNC machine create double-sided rigid PCB.
  • 15.10. AgIC have developed a specially-coated PET substrate for inkjetting
  • 15.11. Left: example of a desktop printed single-sided PCB on a plastic (flexible) substrate. Right: example of a Cartesian desktop PCB printer.
  • 15.12. Example of a bot factory machine in the IDTechEx office
  • 15.13. Professional multi-layer desktop PCB printer by NanoDimension
  • 15.14. Example of a multi-layer professional PCB printed using a professional desktop PCB printers.
  • 15.15. Classification and structure of FPCB
  • 15.16. Example of a PCB manufactured using inkjet printed photoresist. Here, printing replaces photolithography
  • 15.17. seed-and-plat PCB using screen printing by Tatsutu
  • 15.18. prototypes of screen printed seed and plated PCB with L/S 50/59
  • 15.19. Comparison of different PCB techniques
  • 16.1. Examples of application that use a transparent conductive layer (glass or film) and the performance of ITO films
  • 16.2. Ten-year market forecast for transparent conductive films split by TCF technology
  • 16.3. The sheet resistance requirements scale with the display size.
  • 16.4. Sheet resistance requirements and efficiency of organic photovoltaic.
  • 16.5. Sheet resistance as a function of radius curvature for ITO films. ITO cracks and its sheet resistance goes up when the film is bent.
  • 16.6. Sheet resistance as a function of bending cycle or angle for different TCF technologies such as metal mesh, PEDOT, silver nanowires and carbon nanotubes.
  • 16.7. ITO film price drop from $35/sqm to $18/sqm in a space of two years
  • 16.8. Comparing the market forecast for medium-sized (e.g., AIOs) touch screens pre and post 2012.
  • 16.9. Sales of TPK by touch display size.
  • 16.10. Quantitatively benchmarking different transparent conductive film technologies
  • 16.11. The process flow for making TCFs developed by NanoGrid based in Suzhou
  • 16.12. Nanoimprint technology process flow for establishing a metal mesh with 5um linewidths
  • 16.13. Printed silver nanoparticle inks and a large touch module
  • 16.14. ClearJet inkjet prints drops of specially formulated silver nano inks, which then self-assemble into a pattern shown above to form a conductive network that is also transparent
  • 16.15. Process flow for gravure offset printing metal mesh with 5um linewidths
  • 16.16. Plastic surfaces covered with printed transparent Ag metal mesh with 5um linewidth
  • 16.17. Metal mesh TCF made using screen printed photo-patternable conductive pastes. Here, we see linewidths as low as 3.5um, a prototype touch screen and flexibility data.
  • 16.18. 3M large-area touch table made using 3um metal mesh
  • 16.19. Large area touch table with screen printed metal mesh
  • 16.20. high performance metal mesh using UV patterned silver nanoparticles
  • 16.21. printing drum, process and results for printing metal mesh with nanometer scale linewidths
  • 16.22. Ten-year market projections for the use of silver nano inks as an ITO replacement
  • 17.1. Conductive pattern drawn using an ink supplier by Electronics Inks. The pen shown in the photo is the conductive ink that Sakura and Electroninks jointly developed.
  • 17.2. Examples of applications and performance levels of a conductive ink developed by Dream Inks in China.
  • 17.3. Colloidal's ink curing and resistivity
  • 17.4. Example of conductive pattern inkjet-printed using an Epson printed and Colloidal's inks.
  • 18.1. The structure of a digitizer in a mobile phone.
  • 18.2. Value chain of printed digitizers in consumer electronics from powders to devices.
  • 18.3. results of a 5.5inch digitizer with printed Cu lines
  • 19.1. Commercial and prototype OLED vs existing (2013 data) LED performance levels
  • 19.2. Examples of LED and OLED lighting installations showing that LED can achieve effective surface emission thanks to the use of waveguides.
  • 19.3. Flexible, thin and light-weight OLED lighting products launched by LG Chem and Konica Minolta.
  • 19.4. Cost projections in $/Klm as a function of year.
  • 19.5. Examples of latest OLED lighting installations in museums, nightclubs, festivals and libraries.
  • 19.6. Ten-year market projections for OLED lighting as a function of year segmented by end application
  • 19.7. Structure of a typical OLED lighting device
  • 19.8. Ten-year market projections for silver nanoinks in OLED lighting applications.
  • 20.1. Large-area LED arrays developed by FlexBright Oy
  • 20.2. Printed interconnects over large areas with mounted (pick and place) LEDs for use in decorative purposes.
  • 20.3. Front and backside of a printed large-area LED array
  • 20.4. Example of a flexible LED sheet
  • 20.5. Example of LED lighting array on an etch FPCB.
  • 21.1. Comparing traditional and printing methods of manufacturing thin film transistors
  • 21.2. examples of printable semiconducting materials and their mobility levels for printed TFTs
  • 21.3. Unit sales of electrophoretic displays between 2010 and 2014 showing the market downturn
  • 21.4. printed photo or x-ray arrays with printed backplanes
  • 21.5. pressure and temperature sensor arrays with printed transistors
  • 21.6. Publication trends for solution-processed metal oxides
  • 21.7. High temperatures are often needed to anneal solution processed metal oxide TFTs
  • 21.8. performance and characteristics of Evonik's solution-processed metal oxide TFT
  • 21.9. picture, application and device structure of fully-printed organic TFT array by JAPERA
  • 21.10. microscopic images of printed interconnects for printed thin film transistors and schematic of the printing process
  • 21.11. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks/pastes in printed TFT/memory
  • 22.1. Revenue and net income of Thin Film Electronics between 2011 and 2015
  • 22.2. counterfeiting and consumer engagement printed memory tags
  • 22.3. printed temperature sensor tag with printed memory
  • 22.4. Image and schematic of the printed memory devices
  • 22.5. Images of an actual device, printed memory role, and the process flow
  • 23.1. example of conductive-adhesive paste EMI shielding tapes: film structure and an example of use case in flexible printed boards
  • 23.2. transition from metallic cans/cages to conformal coatings for EMI shielding
  • 23.3. process flow for conformal coatings, printed or sprayed, on chips
  • 23.4. Image of chips in iphone7 with EMI shielding.
  • 23.5. Effectiveness of copper as an electric and magnetic shield from 10KHz to 1 Gz
  • 23.6. Attenuation of magnetic fields by metallic and ferromagnetic materials at low to high frequency ranges
  • 23.7. Effective of conductive ink-based magnetic shields at medium to high frequencies
  • 23.8. total market forecasts for conductive pastes in EMI shielding in consumer electronics
  • 23.9. market forecasts for non-nano inks in EMI shielding coatings in consumer electronics
  • 23.10. market forecasts for Ag nano inks in EMI shielding coatings in consumer electronics
  • 23.11. market forecasts for non-nano inks in EMI shielding coatings in consumer electronics
  • 24.1. Design and performance of frequency-selective surface and reflectarray grating with printed conductive inks
  • 25.1. Ten-year market forecasts for conductive inks/pastes in flexible e-readers
  • 26.1. printed large-area battery and plant heaters
  • 28.1. Properties of the low-melting-point alloy before and after melting (structure and conductivity)
  • 28.2. Electron microscope images of the Napra-developed copper paste (left) and of commercially available resin silver paste (right)
  • 28.3. Resistivity of silver and copper pastes (Commercially available copper pastes: A, B, and C; Napra-developed copper paste: D; and commercially available silver paste: E)
  • 28.4. Resistivity vs. cure temperature for glass-coated silver nanoparticles
  • 28.5. The annealing process and equipment used for Hitachi Chemical's inks and pastes
  • 28.6. Performance of Hitachi Chemical's inks compared to printed circuit board solutions
  • 28.7. The Pulse Forge principle
  • 28.8. Copper pastes developed by Toyobo
  • 28.9. Flexographic formulation of Vor-Ink from Vorbeck
  • 28.10. Packaging Natralock® with Siren™ Technology
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