True, Mydesign. I spent years (and still do sometimes) hauling around my bulky laptop on my back, to the detriment of my back, of course! Really look forward to the day when I can fold it up and tuck it away. More flexible material is much lighter as well.
Ann, if they are targeting only short-lived products then its fine, otherwise durability is a major concern. I personally feels that such advantages has to pass to all level of electronic application, irrespective of it's a short/long lived products.
Thanks, bobjengr. I didn't think of that, either, but RFID is definitely another application of this technology as it increases in use. That is another technology that has been simmering for years and has taken a bit of time to catch on but you're right, it seems to be making real moves now.
Great post Elizabeth. Also, I can see real application to RFID devices that are gaining greater use as complements and replacements for barcodes systems. These devices are dropping in costs and improving in effectiveness. Flexible battery technology is important and I would not be surprised if some form of commercialization is around the corner.
Good question, Al. Maybe one of readers knows of miniaturization work. I do know that all electronics manufacturers are knocking themselves out to reduce MCU current consumption, and therby reduce the number of batteries that are needed. I'm constantly hearing about devices that get taken down from two or three coin cells to a single coin cell.
Just wondering if anyone knows about any significant work being done with the miniaturization of battery technology? Obvious product designs are managing energy usage like never before, and there is an emphasis on efficiency. I would think that smaller sizes would be a way to help achieve the goal of making mobile devices more portable wearable.
Mydesign, good point about durability. I don't know about the battery technology, since that's somewhat newer, but I began covering flexible electronics about 15 years ago in the technology's early days. That tech is pretty well established--just hasn't been visible until now since many of its earlier uses were inside consumer and other devices: like sport watches, for instance, and other small devices containing electronics. That's how we got circuit boards inside the small stuff. Point is, I think a) the durability problems have been pretty well solved by now for flex circuits, and b) they mostly go into short-lived products.
Engineers at Fuel Cell Energy have found a way to take advantage of a side reaction, unique to their carbonate fuel cell that has nothing to do with energy production, as a potential, cost-effective solution to capturing carbon from fossil fuel power plants.
To get to a trillion sensors in the IoT that we all look forward to, there are many challenges to commercialization that still remain, including interoperability, the lack of standards, and the issue of security, to name a few.
This is part one of an article discussing the University of Washington’s nationally ranked FSAE electric car (eCar) and combustible car (cCar). Stay tuned for part two, tomorrow, which will discuss the four unique PCBs used in both the eCar and cCars.
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