The industry’s demands to reduce the weight and volume of components in order to increase productivity and energy efficiency have led to the development of embedded functional electronics solutions.

The Sustainable Development Goals balance the economic, social, and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. 

SUINK will focus on the sustainability indicators along the entire value chain (design, manufacturing, use and end-of-life).

The main objective of SUINK is to design and implement sustainable, flexible and printable self-charging power systems (SCPS) able to supply power to a wide range of sensors. 

These SCPS will be formed by sustainable elements:

  • a piezoelectric energy generator to harvest electrical energy from mechanical vibrations based on piezoelectric PLA, 
  • a rectifying system as a connection circuit with
  • a fully printed biobased supercapacitor as energy storage component.

The overall solution will be based on the proper combination of biobased conductive, dielectric, and piezoelectric inks that will be applied by inkjet printing, a high throughput and easy-to-implement process, on biobased flexible substrates. 

The printed substrates will be implemented in the following elements:

  1. a PLA seat (temperature sensor)
  2. a PLA bracket located inside the car, specifically in the windscreen of the car (temperature/humidity sensor)
  3. a thermoset composite (strain sensor). The foils will be used for the creation of in-mold structural electronics through
    1. plastic injection over moulding
    2. one-shot hybrid textile and
    3. autoclave/sheet moulding processes, towards the development of multifunctional components meeting the requirements of the automotive.

SUINK will consider not only the sustainability during the design, manufacturing and use, but also will promote the circularity at the products end of life implementing new recyclability and reusability protocols.

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Press release 15-09-2022

SUINK project to contribute to Europe’s green and digital transformation

Tekniker and Centexbel are proud to announce the launch of the SUINK project aiming to develop innovative green solutions to supply power to a wide range of sensors for the automotive sector

Zwijnaarde (Belgium), 15 September 2022 

Tekniker and Centexbel are glad to announce the launch of a new European project on functional electronics: the SUINK project (SUstainable self-charging power systems developed by INKjet printing). 
The main objective of SUINK is to design and implement sustainable, flexible, and printable self-charging power systems able to supply power to a wide range of sensors. 

Today, a car is equipped with over 60 sensors to monitor essential aspects including temperature, oil pressure, emission levels, and speed. This number is only expected to increase as self-driving and electric vehicles become more popular. However, these sensors need to be connected to a power source using cables and connectors, adding undesired weight, and lowering the overall reliability of the vehicle.

The SUINK project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 101070112.

Co-ordinated by Tekniker, SUINK brings together 11 partners from 5 countries across Europe:  

  • Spain: Tekniker, Universidad del País Vasco, Oribay. 
  • Belgium: Centexbel, Greenovate! Europe. 
  • France: Dowel Innovation, Institut Mines-Télécom.
  • Finland: Kaira Clan, Tampere University. 
  • Italy: Gemmate Technologies, Centro Researcher Fiat.