Monday, June 13, 2005


Idea for future circuit production

For the far future of the RepRap, we might be able to make our own microcircuitry in a way that borrows principles from the current silicon manufacturing technologies.

If we have a photosensitive organic semiconductor ink that hardens on exposure to light, and project the image of a circuit (possibly using a PC screen or some other emissive display) onto a substrate coated in it, then the conductive polymer is fixed in place. Wash it and put a layer of another ink on, expose that to a different set of tracks, rinse and repeat until the circuit is complete.

RepRap should enable the production of equipment that can automate this process. Like I say, far future, but we have to get these ideas down in case some antisocial tries to patent them...

Vik :v)

I like your idea... could maybe use an off the shelf LCD Projector with UV bulb to build up layers for an object using UV hardened materials. I believe this is done now with "solid ground curing (Cubital)" using a photomask of copier black.
Printed circuit article:
Also simple laserprinted circuits may use this:
Good luck!
Since a RepRap machine has to have an accurate 2D positioning mechanism and some kind of vertical adjustment, it would only require the addition of a cheap drill bit and a motor to turn it into a low powered CNC drilling/milling machine.

You could provide generic two layer circuit boards with a suitable grid of copper tracks on both sides and plated through-holes at intervals - and customise those for whatever application you need by drilling the board to a shallow depth to cut tracks - or to deeper depth to drill out a through-plated hole so it no longer connects between layers.
I've used the foil transfer sheets before and, unfortunately, the foil is a terrible conductor and it doesn't take solder.
What if you use a laser printer print head mounted on a carriage. That would give a 300dip resolution 8" wide and as long as the carriage travel.
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