A Chinese scientist has developed an inkjet printer that uses liquid metal for ink, allowing it to rapidly print circuits. Could this be another market for reprographics shops?
Here is an excerpt from an article in MIT Technology Review about this:
One of the dreams of makers the world over is to be able to print electronic circuits on more or less any surface using a desktop printer. The great promise is the possibility of having RFID circuits printed on plastic or paper packaging, LED arrays on wallpaper and even transparent circuits on glass. Or simply to rapidly prototype circuits when designing new products.
There are no shortage of conducting inks that aim to do this but they all have drawbacks of various kinds. For example, many inks have low or difficult-to-control conductivity or need to be heated to temperatures of up to 400 degrees C after they have been printed thereby limiting the materials on which they can be printed. The result is that the ability to print circuits routinely on flexible materials such as paper or plastic has remained largely a dream.