Conventional electronics requires the use of numerous deposition techniques (e.g. chemical vapor deposition, physical vapor deposition, and photolithography) with demanding conditions like ultra-high vacuum, elevated temperature and clean room facilities. In the last decades, printed electronics (PE) has proved the use of standard printing techniques to develop electronic devices with new features such as, large area fabrication, mechanical flexibility, environmental friendliness and—potentially—cost effectiveness. This kind of devices is especially interesting for the popular concept of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which the number of employed electronic devices increases massively. Because of this trend, the cost and environmental impact are gradually becoming a substantial issue. One of the main technological barriers to overcome for PE to be a real competitor in this context, however, is the integration of these non-conventional techniques between each other and the embedding of these devices in standard electronics. This chapter summarizes the advances made in this direction, focusing on the use of different techniques in one process flow and the integration of printed electronics with conventional systems.
Part of the book: Flexible Electronics