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Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
  • Lorraine F Francis
  • (612) 625-0559
  • C. Daniel Frisbie
  • Satish Kumar
Award Date:10/23/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 674,184
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 674,184
  • FY 2021=$674,184
Start Date:12/01/2020
End Date:11/30/2023
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.041
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:Advanced Roll-to-Roll Manufacturing of High-Performance Printed Electronics
Federal Award ID Number:2038722
DUNS ID:555917996
Parent DUNS ID:117178941
Program:AM-Advanced Manufacturing
Program Officer:
  • Thomas F. Kuech
  • (703) 292-2218

Awardee Location

Street:200 OAK ST SE
Awardee Cong. District:05

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Cong. District:05

Abstract at Time of Award

This grant addresses the need for improved fundamental understanding of the manufacturing of flexible printed electronics. Flexible printed electronics has tremendous potential for a spectrum of exciting products in fields spanning health care, robotics, security and distributed sensing. However, the growth in the field has been limited by the lack of roll-to-roll manufacturing processes that are efficient, reliable and produce high-performance electronic circuits. This grant carries out research on the manufacturing fundamentals needed by the field overall and for a specific roll-to-roll additive manufacturing platform called Self-Aligned Capillarity-Assisted Lithography for Electronics, or SCALE. SCALE combines two industrially established technologies, imprint lithography and inkjet printing, to achieve a high-throughput manufacturing platform for printed electronic devices with smaller feature sizes and layer-to-layer alignment of electronic materials needed for high-performance flexible electronic circuits. The research will contribute fundamental knowledge in electronics, fluid mechanics, materials development and manufacturing processes, impacting not only the printed electronics research community and industry, but also multiple fields and industrial sectors, such as microfluidics, conformal optics, soft robotics, and distributed sensing. The research team brings together expertise in electronic materials and devices, manufacturing, fluid mechanics and modeling. The research involves graduate students as well as K-12 students and industry through outreach events. This grant supports fundamental research to overcome formidable challenges facing the flexible printed electronics field, including integration of multiple materials, creation of streamlined manufacturing processes, and achievement of the high-performance requirements of modern electronics. Using the SCALE platform, the team will conduct research to understand and predict the capillary flow and solidification of electronic inks, develop new electronic device designs, improve roll-to-roll manufacturing processes, and explore the connections between processing, materials and mechanical performance of flexible electronic devices. One important goal is the fabrication of devices capable of high-frequency operation, which demands precise control of the size, distribution and thickness of electronic materials. The research includes both computational modeling of ink flow and material distribution as well as innovative designs and experiments that elucidate the process fundamentals and the performance of the resulting devices and circuits. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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