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Electronics & Test

Thinfilm Offers Printed-Electronics Standalone Sensor System

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Elizabeth M
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Good potential
Elizabeth M   10/30/2013 7:52:27 AM
This system has a lot of potential uses for the supply chain and its reduced impact on the environment, as well as the ability to manufacture it more cheaply (and thus offer it at a lower price) makes it an attractive system for companies transporting perishable goods. It will be interesting to see what other technologies come from Thinfilm along these same lines.

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Not really IoT
naperlou   10/30/2013 11:31:47 AM
Elizabeth, this is a good type of sensor, but it does not really qualify for the Internet of Things (IoT).  To qualify it would have to communicate.  This is just a tag that will tell a human, whenever it is looked at, that there has been a problem at some time.  This is good information, to be sure.  Now, if you made it an RFID type of tag and had a reader on the container, or whatever shipping system was being used, then it could also be useful.  There is a company in the Chicago area, Zebra Technologies, that prints RFID tags. 

I expect that these two could be combined to provide real time tracking of the temperature.  That is probably coming soon.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Re: Not really IoT
Elizabeth M   10/31/2013 4:15:36 AM
Yes, Lou, I see your point. They do plan to include WiFi capability into a future version of the sensor, so I suppose that would make it IoT worthy. I think that's sort of what the company means when it talks about the IoT. The temperature-reading is just the first step in that technology. But you are right in that as it is now, the technology is lacking for this purpose.

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Cost Difference
tekochip   10/30/2013 11:49:04 AM
That is a huge cost difference between the silicon and printed version.  Whenever you see a cost change that large in technology it opens up a wide range of possibilities.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Re: Cost Difference
Elizabeth M   10/31/2013 4:36:36 AM
Yes, that's exactly the company's point, tekochip. By driving down the cost using printed methods and materials, Thinfilm hopes to make this technology more accessible to a broader spectrum of customers.

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