Printed and flexible OLEDs
aren't exactly uncharted territory, but a group of European organizations led by Finland's VTT Technical Research Center look to be taking things a bit further than most, and they're saying their material could eventually be cheap enough to be used in everything from product packaging to business cards. Helping things on that front is the use of regular roll-to-roll printing technology, which both lowers the cost of manufacturing the material and speeds up the production. The resulting material, which is still a tad mysterious, is apparently about as thick as three of four sheets of paper, and consists of organic sensors encapsulated in a moisture barrier film. According to the researchers, it could also be attached to sensors to measure the freshness of food contained in the packaging, or even be used as a copy protection measure. If all goes as planned, the researchers say the material could be put to commercial use in a "couple of years," and cost just a few cents for some applications.