MONTEREY, CA -- FlexTech, a SEMI Strategic Association Partner, awarded five FLEXI Awards in the categories of Innovation, Research & Development, Leadership in Education, and, in a category new this year, Industry Leadership. This is the 9th year of the FLEXI Awards and the winners join a select group of companies and individuals from past years. Judging was done on a set of nominations based on a pre-described set of criteria, by a panel of non-affiliated, independent, industry experts.
This year's Innovation Award goes to two companies, one in manufacturing and one in consumer products. The products were awarded for their outstanding design and ingenuity, with strong market adoption and significant revenue generation. The first FLEXI Award for Innovation was awarded to Sensor Films Inc. (SFI), for their Starlight Digital Manufacturing Platform, which enables a modular approach to flexible and hybrid electronic manufacturing with large area deposition of functional and decorative materials on cut-sheet, flexible, porous or rigid substrates and is scalable to roll to roll production.
Blue Spark Technologies wins the other Innovation FLEXI Award for their TempTraq® product, the only available Bluetooth®, wearable temperature monitor in the form of a soft, comfortable patch that provides caregivers with continuous body temperature data for up to 24 hours to either an Apple® or Android™ compatible mobile device through the free TempTraq app.
Scientists at the University of Massachusetts Lowell received the FLEXI Award for Research & Development for research conducted at the Printed Electronics Research Collaborative (PERC) and the Raytheon-UMass Lowell Research Institute (RURI). This award is given to the nominee evaluated highest for the research approach, originality and the commercial potential for expanding the scope for flexible or printed electronics or manufacturing processes or a real-world problem. The PERC/RURI organization was recognized for its development of the novel BST ink, a ferroelectric nano-ink for printing electrostatically-tunable dielectrics on plastic substrates using direct-ink writing methodologies. The BST ink allows for realizing an all-printed high-frequency voltage variable capacitor for flexible, frequency-agile microwave applications such as phased array antennas and radar systems.
The Technology Leadership in Education Award was bestowed upon the National Science Foundation Center for High Rate NanoManufacturing at Northeastern University (CHN). The CHN in Boston has educated more than 130 students, half at the Ph.D. level on the topics of directed assembly-based printing, synthesis of organic semiconductor, and polymers engineering, leading to the development of the world's first printer for nanoscale electronics on flexible or rigid substrates. CHN has had an impact on established and emerging industries in sensors, electronics, bio/medical, energy, and materials fields by educating the next generation's professional workforce. The CHN publishes extensively in industry journals, created tutorials and other programs to educate the general public, as many as 840,000 individuals. The award recognizes outstanding contributions to the industry through education and workforce development activities.
2016 marks the inaugural year of the Industry Leadership Award to recognize and honor an individual who has shown particular dedication to building awareness of the capabilities and innovations which advanced flexible, hybrid and printed electronics bring to the broader field of electronics. As well, the individual has demonstrated outstanding thought leadership and vision for the industry in public forums, and association activity. The judges and FlexTech wish to acknowledge these contributions by Daniel R. Gamota, Ph.D., currently vice president of Strategic Capabilities in the Engineering & Technology Services Organization at Jabil. Dan has devoted many hours to the genesis of the industry through strategic roadmap development activities and standards work, including organizations such as IEC, IPC, iNEMI, IEEE, A*STAR, and the WTEC panel at the National Science Foundation. Dan commands thought leadership for the industry at numerous public forums and through several peer reviewed flexible and printed electronics publications. In accepting the award, Dan stated, "No one person could have much success without the cooperation of others in the emergence of a disruptive technology such as FHE. It has been a great pleasure in working with many of you in the advancement of the technology and the products they spawn."
Also receiving awards during the evening were student poster contestants. First place was awarded to Yasmin Afsar, Levent Aygun and Can Wu from Princeton University. Their posters and research were entitled: ZnO versus a-Si thin-film oscillator circuits: metrics for design and comparison; High-Frequency ZnO Schottky Diodes for Inductive Non-Contact Interfaces for Hybrid Flexible Electronics/IC integration; and Sensor Data Compression by Large-area Electronics to Reduce Large-area to VLSI Physical Interface Connections in Hybrid Systems, respectively.
Second place poster was awarded to Francisco Suarez from North Carolina State University, for his poster entitled Flexible Thermoelectric Device Using Bulk Materials.
Third place was awarded to Yuvraj Singh from Purdue University for his work on Reliability Enhancement of Active Circuits on Flexible Substrates.
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