Graphic Communication Department
BS in Graphic Communication
Malcolm G. Keif
The purpose of this study is to expose the traditional printing industry to an emerging field of printed electronics. With the popularity of electronic documents and the internet, the bulk of the printing industry will eventually move away from the traditional ink and paper printing and move towards more technical, functional applications that will meet the upcoming needs of society. Printed photovoltaics, or solar panels is an example of printed electronics that can be manufactured by traditional printing processes.
This study investigated if the flexography printing process was a viable way to mass manufacture printed photovoltaics. If so, what specifications and tolerance and specifications will be expected from the press and the printed output to create a successful photovoltaic. Factors such as ink film thickness, ink uniformity, and registration were explored.
The results of this study show that Flexography is a possible way to mass manufacture photovoltaics. However, press modifications and additional material developments are needed in order to successful create a functional photovoltaic.