Functional Materials: Inks, Pastes, Adhesives, & Coatings
ACI Materials offers high-performing functional materials for additive manufacturing, wearable applications, aerospace coatings, and more.
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Functional Materials for Printed Electronics
Printed electronics, a rapidly evolving field at the intersection of technology and manufacturing, rely on functional materials to bring innovative ideas to life. These functional materials include inks, pastes, and coatings that are formulated with conductive particles such as silver and carbon. ACI Materials’ high-performing functional materials are created using a patented process based on cavitation, which is environmentally friendly and enables materials with higher conductivity and better mechanical performance.
Conductive inks unlock a world of possibilities, offering flexible, lightweight, and cost-effective solutions for a wide range of applications, from sensors and heaters to smart displays and antennas, companies worldwide are utilizing additively manufactured parts. Biometric sensors, for example, made from functional materials can be embedded into athletic apparel or healthcare applications and connected to Bluetooth or WiFi to create smart clothing. Conductive inks can be used to create thin, stretchable heaters, touch screens or printed displays, and these examples just scratch the surface of the vast range of capabilities they possess.
Functional Material Types
Functional materials include conductive inks, adhesives, encapsulants, insulators, and coatings. Each type serves its own purpose. Printed electronics can be created by layering conductive inks through additive manufacturing processes like screen printing or direct-write technology. Conductive adhesives are used for applications such as die attach and chip bonding.
Conductive inks can be made from silver or carbon among other materials and are used to carry current or “conduct” electrical signals on printed electronics. ACI offers flexible or stretchable conductors, which have superior conductivity and stretchability. There are three main types of conductive inks: Percolation, Sinterable, and Alchemy (or Semi-Sinterable).
Adhesives are designed for bonding materials to overcome CTE mismatch, or bonding components to stretchable substrates. The adhesives will remain stretchable following a thermal cure. Adhesives can be deposited using stencil, syringe, or jet dispensing.
Encapsulants are used to electrically insulate and protect components mounted to flexible and stretchable films. They can also be used on rigid substrates to protect components from the material expanding or contracting due to temperature changes. They can be used in combination with adhesives and inks or on their own.
Insulators are used to insulate the conductors from the surrounding environment. ACI Materials’ stretchable insulators enable washability of wearable circuits and have passed pseudo-toxicity testing.
ACI’s aerospace coatings protect space capsules and satellites from abrasion, radiation, and the extreme conditions of space. They can be used in terrestrial and space environments.
Download our White Paper on Cavitation
An in-depth explanation of how our patented cavitation process improves the electrical and mechanical properties of functional materials.
ACI Materials’ Functional Materials
Stretchable Conductive Adhesive
TS1331 is a silver-filled, solvent-free, one component conductive adhesive that remains stretchable following thermal cure. This conductive adhesive was designed for bonding to flexible substrates and accommodates interface stresses and strains during bending.
Stretchable Conductive Adhesive
TS1334 is a stretchable adhesive with superior electrical conductivity. It is a silver-filled, one component epoxy that can be deposited using stencil, syringe, or jet dispensing.
Non-Conductive Stretchable Adhesive
TU5236 is a stretchable non-conductive epoxy used to bond components in flexible and stretchable systems and to manage thermal expansion mismatches in rigid packaging solutions.
Stretchable Glop Top Encapsulant
TE5237 is an epoxy-based glob top encapsulant that remains stretchable following thermal cure. The encapsulant can be used in combination with ACI’s stretchable ECAs and NCAs for interconnect solutions.
TS1331, TS1334, TU5236, & TE5237
Flexible Adhesive Combination Packs Including Conductive and Non-Conductive
Sample package of four of ACI's superior adhesives.
Inks and Pastes
Semi-Sintering Conductive Inks
FS0117 is part of ACI Alchemy Conductive Ink series, highly conductive semi-sintering or hybrid-type formulations that enable a range of advantages to current users of silver polymer thick film (PTF) and nanoparticle-based inks, pastes, and coatings. These formulations offer the ease of use and processing of PTF inks and coatings, but with the superior electrical performance of sintered nano inks.
Semi-Sintering Conductive Inks
FS0142 is part of ACI Alchemy Conductive Ink series, highly conductive semi-sintering or hybrid-type formulations that enable a range of advantages to current users of silver polymer thick film (PTF) and nanoparticle-based inks, pastes, and coatings. These formulations offer the ease of use and processing of PTF inks and coatings, but with the superior electrical performance of sintered nano inks.
Flexible Carbon Conductor
FC3203 is a carbon-filled flexible conductive trace ink for use on PET, polyimides, and other bendable substrates.
Stretchable Printed Silver Conductor
SS1109 is a silver-filled conductor for printed interconnects for devices on elastomeric substrates.
Stretchable Printed Carbon Conductor
SC1502 is a carbon-filled conductor for printed circuitry and devices on elastomeric substrates. It can be dried at low temperatures to accommodate sensitive substrates and devices. After curing, the ink has good conductivity and offers excellent elongation and flexibility.
Stretchable Printed Insulator
SI3104 is a screen-printable, thermally cured ink that is stretchable when cured and compatible with ACI’s stretchable inks.
SS1109, SC1502, SI3104
Stretchable Screen Printed Material Combinations
Sample package of three of ACI's superior stretchable materials.
Printed Fixed Resistance Heater Ink
SH5025 is a stretchable resistive trace designed for heating applications integrated onto elastomeric substrates.
AS1101 is an ESD coating ideally suited for aerospace applications requiring exceptional durability and heat resistance. The product is fully inorganic and offers superior abrasion, radiation, corrosion, and chemical resistance.
Thermal Barrier Coating
AS3201 is a thermal barrier coating designed for aerospace applications that require exceptional durability under harsh conditions. The coating is fully inorganic and offers superior abrasion resistance, full resistance to solvents, and protects against corrosion. AS3201 does not erode (chalk) or ablate following scorch testing, salt spray, or other accelerated aging tests.