NextFlex® Launches $11.5 Million Funding Round for Flexible Hybrid Electronics Innovations to Address Manufacturing Challenges and Expand Technology Adoption

SAN JASE, CA – (BUSINESS WIRE) – NextFlex, the American Institute for Hybrid Electronics (FHE), today released Project Call 7.0 (PC 7.0), the latest call for proposals that aims to fund projects that promote the development and adoption of FHE while addressing key cutting-edge issues while supporting priorities of the Ministry of Defense. The total cost of the PC 7.0 project is expected to exceed $ 11.5 million (project cost / investment figures include cost sharing), bringing the total estimated investment in FHE development since NextFlex to $ 128 million.

Building on the success and sustainability of past projects, PC 7.0 continues to use broadly defined themes to build a diverse supply base, with a particular focus on areas where FHE can impact high-priority manufacturing capabilities in the US, and areas that are new important in FHE. community. Areas of focus include manufacturing using FHE for automotive applications, additive approaches to manufacturing FHE devices, applying hybrid electronic manufacturing to applications in modern packaging, and exploring how FHE manufacturing can support improved environmental sustainability in electronics manufacturing.

“We are pleased to announce a new round of funding for advanced manufacturing developments in the United States,” said Malcolm Thompson, Ph.D., CEO of NextFlex. “The benefits of FHE – additive manufacturing of electronic systems that are lightweight, thin and compliant, are changing our perception of how ubiquitous electronics can really be. With each challenge of the project, the NextFlex community brings the technology closer to commercialization and dissemination. ”

Project proposals should include a plan for the transition of projects to a US industrial base with a focus on production issues in the following thematic areas:

  • Manufacture of automotive components with FHE support

  • An advanced approach to packaging for IC integration in FHE devices

  • Electronic components and devices of additive production

  • Improved environmental sustainability of electronics with FHE Manufacturing

  • Production of soft and stretchable electronics

  • Improved dielectric materials and manufacturing methods for FHE devices

  • Portable Human Monitoring / Interface Demonstrator

  • Open topic “New project managers”

In addition, NextFlex announces the release of its roadmaps on FHE technology. NextFlex Technical Working Groups, developed by industry experts, academia and government in 11 technical areas of focus – automotive; Device integration and packaging; Materials; Modeling and design; Printed components and microfluidics; Standards, testing and reliability; Asset monitoring systems; Flexible power; Human monitoring systems; integrated antenna arrays; and Soft Wearable Robotics – update your roadmaps every year. However, this is the first time a publicly available version of road maps has become available. The roadmaps provide detailed information on the current state of the art, market opportunities and needs, key stakeholders, the five-year development roadmap, and priority technical gaps identified by each technical working group. These roadmaps set priorities for NextFlex project calls.

More information about NextFlex 7.0 PCs, including bidding instructions and registration for the March 1 “Bidders Day and Fees” webinar, can be found here.

Proposals are accepted until April 14, 2022.

About NextFlex

NextFlex is an innovative manufacturing institute funded by the U.S. Department of Defense that is funded by the Air Force Research Laboratory Cooperation Agreements under the numbers FA8650-15-2-5402 and FA8650-20-2-5506. NextFlex is a consortium of companies, research institutions, nonprofits, and state, local, and federal governments with the common goal of promoting FHE production in the United States. Since its founding in 2015, the elite NextFlex team, made up of thought leaders, educators, problem-solvers and manufacturers, has teamed up to promote innovation, reduce the workforce gap in production and promote sustainable production ecosystems. For more information, visit www.nextflex.us and follow NextFlex on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

About Flexible Hybrid Electronics (FHE)

Hybrid Electronics is driving the next generation of electronics by providing PCB manufacturers and heterogeneous packaging experts with new solutions such as the advanced hybrid electronic systems we create. FHE gives everyday products the power of silicon chips, combining them with new and unique low-cost and environmentally friendly additive printing processes and new materials. The result is a fast-to-market, lightweight, inexpensive and highly efficient smart product that can be flexible, compliant and stretched with countless uses for consumer, commercial and military devices.

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