In-Mold Electronic Inks: A Union of Form and Function for Printed Plastic Car Parts
A new development may change the way we print and manufacture electronic automotive plastics forever – making cars lighter while improving their appearance and functionality in the process. According to DuPont, their “unique suite of In-Mold Electronic Inks are enabling touch controls to be directly embedded inside of plastic parts by printing circuits directly onto plastic sheets, which are then thermoformed and injection molded.” The result? More than 70% lighter (because buttons and wires account for most of the weight in conventional switches), lower costs (due to fewer parts and manufacturing steps), and up to 40% faster part assembly time (lengthier assembly times are replaced by a single-connection, “snap-on” process).
This “In-Mold” Electronic technology enables designers to create touch switches and connect lighting through printed technology, eliminating the need for traditional switching components and wires – the great union of form and function.
“In-Mold Electronics can simplify structures significantly while opening the door for more creative design possibilities since designers are no longer restricted to the shapes and form factors of printed circuit boards,” said John Voultos, segment manager, DuPont Microcircuit Materials. “These new inks will enable more beautiful appliances and lighter vehicles.”
Kudos to yet another exciting technology development that may help automakers reach strict CAFE standards (54.5 mpg) by 2025!
For more information, watch this video: DuPont In-Mold Electronic Inks – The Perfect Union of Form and Function.