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20 March, 2015 - 09:22 By Kate Sweeney

PragmatIC in new flexible electronics power play

Victor Christou of CIC with Scott White of PragmatIC

Cambridge-based PragmatIC has joined forces with Cartamundi, Van Genechten Packaging, SMARTRAC, TNO and imec to realise the creation of smart and interactive printed objects.

Inspired and supported by the Horizon 2020 program of the EC, the six world leading companies from four different EU countries have founded the PING (Printed Intelligent NFC Game cards and Packaging) consortium to bring flexible electronics from the lab to mainstream markets.

The overall goal of the consortium is to enable and facilitate the production of smart printed objects. Flexible thin film electronics and printed materials, like cards, stickers and packaging, make a perfect combination to realise the Internet of Things.

Scott White, CEO of PragmatIC, said that within three years the consortium partners want to establish the complete supply chain to embed thin film based RFID technology in printed objects (packaging, cards, stickers) and printable substrates (paper, cardboard, plastic). 

White said: “It is our goal to make even more objects part of the Internet of Things and the ‘internet of games’. We want to make it possible to identify and interact with printed objects through standard NFC and RFID reading devices (e.g. smartphones). Additional features like sensors, displays, sound etc can be added to the smart objects at a later stage.

“To make this happen we will develop extremely thin, flexible and durable electronics and we need to establish the supply chain that allows for standardised manufacturing at the lowest cost and highest volumes.

“Not only will we be working on the NFC chip of the future, but also we will reinvent the industry’s standards in assembly process and the conversion into game cards and packaging.”

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Victor Christou of CIC (left) with Scott White of PragmatIC. In January 2015, CIC and ARM Holdings invested £5.4m in PragmatIC to accelerate production of flexible integrated circuits for the Internet of Things

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