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Reporting period: 2020-04-01 to 2021-09-30

MADRAS aims to demonstrate a materials-driven improvement of OLAE devices, by establishing a fabrication methodology to assure their processability, stability and operational lifetime and their seamless integration into flexible and wearable products in a scalable competitive manufacturing process, which is In Mould Electronics (IME).
Two demonstrators of new generation, for authentication of persons (photodetector) and for Industry 4.0 sector (geo-tracking flexible tag), will be developed, validating the MADRAS strategy within a complete supply chain.
MADRAS is developing radically new manufacturing methodology for high volume production of durable OLAE based devices, while addressing the use of conventional and established industrial manufacturing techniques and adapted processing tools to deliver this innovative technology closer to market. The project goal is to enable the future market deployment of flexible and wearable OLAE-based products guaranteeing the use of industrially and environmentally sustainable materials and processes that are attractive to the market for their advanced functionalities, robustness, durability and safety. The approach is based on a set of new materials including paper-based substrates and conductive materials to be used as inks, specifically developed for flexible OLAE products with improved electrical (conductivity, charge mobility) and optical (transparency) properties compared to common OLAE materials such as the expensive and scarce Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) since Indium is a critical raw material2.
MADRAS is planned over a period of 36 months divided into four project phases:
1) Materials improvement
2) Design and printing of materials and control circuits
3) Demo product manufacturing and validation
4) Demonstration of materials, processing, and demonstrators in relevant environments
The first achievement for the current period has been the technical specifications definition. These requirements are a supporting base for the technical work to be followed and adapted by partners throughout the project activities. For the mterials improvement, relevant advances towards the target values have been achieved in the performance of materials in terms of transparency, conductivity and resistance to moisture and ambient oxygen have been obtained.
The manufacturing process progress has started with the development of inks and substrates specially designed for final IME demonstrators. Materials development was focused on the improvement of Ag NW, Ag NP, WO3 NP and PEDOT:PSS-based inks and nanocellulose-based substrates. The printing processes for selected inks have been set up, by techniques such as blade coating, slot die and screen printing. Quality checks have been done and photoactive materials have been selected to ensure high performance of the photodetector device when applying MADRAS inks. The functionality of the inks on OPD has been analysed.
The definition of the goals and scope for the environmental assessment has started, proposing the elements needed from the requirements gathering phase. A literature review has been conducted to find the more relevant scientific studies focusing on the environmental assessment of printed electronics, to define key functional aspects and the impact categories to be considered for the Life cycle assessment within the two demonstrators.
To increase the chances for the results of the project to become tangible benefits, the Key Exploitable Results (KER) have been assessed and potential new results have been identified in order to conduct efficient planning and management of each project outcome.
- New products: MADRAS aims at demonstrating the materials-driven improvement of OLAE devices, establishing a fabrication methodology to assure their processability, stability and operational lifetime and their seamless integration into flexible and wearable products in a scalable competitive manufacturing process, which is IME. Its novelty relies in developing advanced OLAE materials to be processed via IME to fabricate a new generation of plastronic products with enhanced properties. - The impact is expected to be high in other markets answering societal needs, with low-cost manufacturing, efficient raw materials management, functional performance, and durability, thus increasing industrial competitiveness of EU enterprises. Improvement in cost competitiveness, lifetime and processability as well as manufacturing capability for OLAE materials and electronics: The use of MADRAS techniques will also allow to customise new and traditional products in many different industries, it means that one of the key impacts expected is to enhance OLAE materials inside Europe to maintain its leading position, validating electrical performance (mobility and uniformity), processability, and stability.
- Improved environmental stability, WVTR < 10-6 gm-2 d-1 at 20°C/50% RH and OTR < 10-6 cm3 m-2 d-1 bar-1, of organic electronic materials for products, to demonstrated by the end of the project.
- Improved printable commercial material charge carrier mobility up to 15 cm2/(V·s), and environmental impact: reduced resources consumption, reduced CO2 emissions and reduced waste: A Cost‑Benefit Analysis methodology will be applied to demonstrate a 30% reduction of materials. The CBA will calculate the opportunity cost of the developed products and will compare the developed OLAE devices with main market competitors extracting the main advantages and transforming them in monetary values. MADRAS challenge is to shift from a cost based to a high-value added competitive advantage.
- In addition, with the integration of biometric sensors, it is envisioned to increase the user security and decrease vandalism, which is an important factor negatively impacting the social mobility companies, both financially and environmentally