Printed electronics for health
Printed electronics is a source of innovation in healthcare. It meets the challenges of the functions expected of medical devices: thinness, lightness, strength, flexibility, conformability, etc. It is a new generation of electronic devices adapted to the comfort and daily use of patients. The Institute develops, structures and leads the Printed Electronics – Health ecosystem by creating synergies between the expectations of hospital practitioners in terms of medical devices, the technological and scientific expertise of partner laboratories and the know-how of electronics and IOT manufacturers.
This technology is not a substitute for “traditional” (i.e. silicon-based) electronics but a complement for a number of applications. Printed electronics is a multidisciplinary field that calls upon different skills in chemistry, physics and electronics. This combination of new materials and large-area production techniques opens up a wide range of electronic functions that can be manufactured and integrated at low cost.
Simple or complex electronic functions are realized with organic or inorganic materials printed on flexible or rigid substrates. The specifications of each product define the printing processes, the functional ink formulations and the associated substrates.
In the healthcare sector, the prospects for electronic functions available on flexible, light and thin substrates are multiple and foresee an exponential growth.
An environmental technology
Printed electronics leave a small carbon footprint in the development of medical devices. The manufacturing process is based on solutions used at ambient conditions. The production processes are based on additive deposition of very thin layers with a reduced number of steps. By contract to conventional cleanroom technologies, printed electronics uses low power and water consumption. In addition, printed electronics uses non-toxic substrates such as plastic (potentially recycled), paper, glass substrates or other eco-friendly materials.
The overall approach of the printed electronics players to eco-design is the introduction of the circular economy from the product design stage.
The research teams
PRINTUP INSTITUTE relies on a unique set of instruments and scientific expertise in all the fields necessary for product development.
A number of products connected to printed electronics are currently being developed to produce thin, flexible, light devices that can be easily integrated into existing tools and that can be recycled. Various properties are brought to them: extreme sensitivity to deformations, vibrations, energy or temperature variations. These devices require only low energy consumption compatible with nomadic applications. Moreover, these devices can generate their own energy from vibrations or ambient heat.
The institute focuses on three lines of medical devices
Smart mattresses in hospitals to prevent pressure sores
Floor mats with printed electronics for counting, detecting and pressing movements
Pressure sensors for orthopedic prostheses
Point of care
Real-time monitoring of the patient's physicochemical parameters using sensors (pressure, temperature, pH, chemical content of physiological fluids, heart rate, monitoring of UV exposure).
Glucose tests for diabetics
Smart dressings and implants
Autonomous delivery of the appropriate dose of medication with wound level detection sensor: analysis of UV radiation on the skin with analysis sensors
Easy-to-use multi-marker blood test strips, portable connected readers and applications for data transmission to healthcare professionals
Cell duplicates for DNA testing, for covid detection
In Vitro Diagnosis
Monitoring of the pregnant woman
Monitoring of epileptic seizures or cardiac arrhythmias with sensors adapted to the outlines of the brain or heart
Medical devices: Authentication and traceability systems for surgical devices
Smart labels monitoring humidity, temperature and even pH
Blood or organ transport: traceability and temperature