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70 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I DECEMBER 2022 Introduction e printed electronics sector is presently an area of great interest to many in the electron- ics manufacturing industry. Because of their incredible utility, printed electronics (PE) are poised to generate tens of billions of dollars in the coming years. Recent research indicates that the total market for printed, flexible and organic electronics will grow from $41.2 bil- lion in 2020 to $74 billion in 2030 1 . e term "printed electronics," with its rela- tively recent appearance in the industry's lexi- con, may seem to refer to electronic circuits comprised of conductors and various active and passive components (i.e., transistors, resistors, capacitors) printed directly onto a substrate of some type. According to this defi- nition, printed electronics are clearly a signifi- cant departure from traditional approaches to A Primer on Flexible Circuits in Printed Electronics electronics manufacturing. However, market- ers are trying to position a host of manufactur- ing solutions under the "printed electronics" umbrella to take advantage of the growing buzz surrounding the technology, which has created confusion around the term. is confusion may be a factor in the sec- tor's slow growth rate. While there is presently a market for these devices, the growth rate predicted by exuberant market forecasters has not yet been realized. Barriers to exponential growth seem to be related to the current inabil- ity of suppliers to reduce costs to enable large- scale manufacturing of printed electronics. Every disruptive technology that has sought to surpass existing, highly competitive, and/ or traditional technologies has faced this chal- lenge. So far, printed electronics have replaced some existing applications but have made little Happy's Tech Talk #15 by Happy Holden, I-CONNECT007 Figure 1: Some of the major potential applications of printed electronics 2 .

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