IDTechEx Predicts Flexible Electronics will own a Major Slice of the Healthcare Market by 2030

smart Health Patches 2
Athlete wearing the smart Health Patch.

DSP Valley active in Flexible Electronics and Healthcare

Healthcare is a major market for both established and emerging technologies. Flexible Electronics is a growing field gaining more and more momentum. Flexible electronics in healthcare is a combination with a bright future.

As our Newsletter readers and members will know, DSP Valley is currently active in three Flexible (and Wearable) Electronics projects: Flexlines (focused on creating a one-stop-shop for flexible electronics), SmartX (specifically geared towards flexible electronics in textiles), and SmartEEs (aimed at helping innovative companies digitize). This is by design: flexible (and wearable) electronics have high potential. This is in part because of their many possible applications.

One of DSP Valley’s core programs in Smart Health. We’re co-founders of the IBN This year, we’ve worked hard alongside our partners and MedTech Flanders in getting a Spearhead Cluster for Health Tech off the ground in Flanders.

Collaborative Digital Business Breeding

Our work in the health technology and flexible electronics sectors is essential to our central mission: breeding digital business through collaborative business development. The European Flexible and Wearable Electronics projects and the IBN and coming Spearhead Cluster are concrete examples of creating collaborative business opportunities. These go beyond single company, or even single application, vision and seek to build and support strong ecosystems that will be economically sustainable.

This is why we were delighted to read IDTechEx’s analysis. The abstract of their report “Flexible Electronics in Healthcare 2020-2030” confirms DSP Valley’s perceptions. It reinforces our resolve to continue to work hard to bring Flexible Electronics and Health Tech together, in our region and beyond.

Click here to read the summary sent to us by IDTechEx. Please note that we have nothing to do with their research. This is neither an endorsement nor a promotion.

Join us to find out more

Want to find out more about our Flexible (and Wearable) Electronics projects? Check out the upcoming FREE events – click the titles for more information and to register:

Flexible Electronics Webinar Flexlines unites different players providing access to new Flexible Electronics technologies through one-stop-shop concepts in order to accelerate the design, development, and uptake of advanced applications in Flexible & Wearable Electronics. 
14:00 CETOnline
SmartEEs information Session with TNOThe SmartEEs Project is funded by Horizon 2020 and is aimed at supporting SMEs and Mid-caps in integrating flexible and wearable electronics into novel (series of) products.

In this webinar, Corne Rentrop (TNO) and Dieter Therssen (DSP Valley) will explain all about the project and what the benefits are for companies and service providers thinking about applying.
14:00 CETOnline
SmartEEs Information Session with imecThe SmartEEs Project is funded by Horizon 2020 and is aimed at supporting SMEs and Mid-caps in integrating flexible and wearable electronics into novel (series of) products.

In this webinar, Dieter Therssen (DSP Valley), Maarten Cauwe (imec), and Frederick Bossuyt (imec) will explain all about the project and what the benefits are for companies and service providers thinking about applying.
11:00 CETOnline

Flexlines presents progress at Flexible Electronics and Smart Textiles Seminar

flexible electronics
By Shirine Irani, DSP Valley

Our Flexlines consortium was present at the DSP Valley seminar Flexible Electronics and Smart Textiles on 15 November 2019. The workshop focused on Flexible Electronics in general and Smart Textiles more specifically. DSP Valley has been key in        bringing together companies (SMEs) and research actors necessary to advance this exciting domain.

Continue reading “Flexlines presents progress at Flexible Electronics and Smart Textiles Seminar”

Technical Highlights from Flexlines One-Stop-Shop Concept

by DSP Valley, TNO, and imec

At the Advanced Engineering 2019 Conference, Romano Hoofman (imec), Nikolas Papadopoulos (imec) and Auke Jisk Kronemeijer (TNO) shared their insights on the one-stop-shop concept and the role of this shop in the local ecosystem. They also demonstrated the progress in design capabilities and showed some examples of functionalities that can be realized with flexible TFT (Thin-Film Transistor) technology.

Serving the cross-border region

Flexlines is an Interreg project with a consortium of leading partners in the Netherlands-Belgium cross-border region. The consortium is setting up a pilot line for the realization of Flexible Electronics prototypes, in order to serve interested parties in the cross-border region to get acquainted with the (im)possibilities of Flexible Electronics. The project, started in 2018, has taken some clear steps forward.

One front desk

A piece of flexible electronic between two fingers

The aim is to create easy access to the fabrication of flexible electronics prototypes. Academia and companies can contact a single ’front desk’ with their requests regarding possible functional demonstrators based on Flexible Electronics. This way they can have their ideas fabricated in flexible and cheap electronics applications. The main emphasis will be on parties who are unfamiliar with underlying technologies.

Multi-customer project services will be developed for flexible electronics. This makes it possible to lower the fabrication cost by sharing multiple customer prototypes on the same production run.

An info-graphic depicting a typical ecosystem
Fig 1: a typical ecosystem (c) imec

Technical highlights

Thin-film electronics and Hybrid Printed Electronics for IoT provide endless possibilities: for instance wearable health patches, thin-film electronics in products for user interaction, ‘smart shelves’ in shops, displays, lighting… Compared to Silicon, TFT deployments are much more extensive, yet much cheaper.

A graph depicting Silicon v. TFT flexible IoT circuit foundries
Fig 2: Flexible IoT circuit foundries; Silicon v. TFT (c) imec

The project partners have established clear links in the workflows from Initial Contact Request over Prototype Design to the Realization of the (integration of) Electronics in a Final Demonstrator. Technical development has also resulted in some highlights:

    • A Process Design Kit (PDK) has been realized by imec and KU Leuven to streamline the electronic design
    • The quality of electronics components from the GEN1 TFT Pilot Line at TNO has been improved using a Lean Six Sigma methodology

  • The compatibility of Integration Technologies such as Injection Moulding and Thermoforming with the core Flexible TFT Technology is under investigation
  • Holst Centre has realized a Transparent Fingerprint Scanner demonstrator, gaining the ‘Best Prototype Award’ at the leading display conference and exhibition SID Display Week 2019 in San Jose in May 2019

Holst Centre R&D pilot line facilities
Fig 3: Holst Centre© GEN1 R&D Pilot Line Facilities

Flexlines will continue to establish its workflows and alignment in the technical domain within its consortium, in order to be ready for requests from partners in due time.

For more information, please contact:

Mr Auke Jisk Kronemeijer, TNO – Project research activities, GEN1 TFT Pilot Line
Mr Romano Hoofman, imec – One-stop-shop
Mr Kris Myny and Nikolas Papadopoulos, imec – Design

 Flexlines and Interreg Vlaanderen-Nederland logos