PARC Innovations Update (2009 #5)

This is the archive entry for our e-mail newsletter, PARC Innovations Update. [subscribe]

  • Spotlights: Printed electronics opportunity & challenge; on keeping U.S. innovation competitive [share your comments]
  • On the Road: Printed electronics, flexible electronics
  • People: PARC scientist awarded AIP Prize for Industrial Applications of Physics
  • Featured: PARC Forum on Stretchable Electronics [watch online]
  • PARC In the News: Volunteers log off Wikipedia; PARC overflowing with new ideas; what your phone might do for you two years from now; more…

Spotlights: Printed electronics opportunity & challenge; on keeping U.S. innovation competitive

A $300 billion industry is in the making. Raghu Das, CEO of analyst firm IDTechEx (and the first guest contributor to PARC’s blog), argues that the “printed electronics” industry will eventually become far larger than the semiconductor industry today. By offering such advantages as new form factors, lower cost, and large area electronics, printed electronics have already made available devices such as batteries, photovoltaics, transistors, new display technologies, sensors, printed conductors, and more. But these are enabling technologies — not products. How can we create new markets and novel designs for products that users need? More…

PARC today is no longer “Xerox PARC” but a commercial entity with multiple Fortune 500 and other clients. We’re building our contemporary innovation model by positioning ourselves at the heart of industrial R&D, government contracts, and world-class university research. (For us, the last one is translated as bringing together the top minds from diverse fields: our talent is our primary asset.) To support the next waves of innovation, we need to examine how the rest of the U.S. and world will replicate Silicon Valley – with its access to top talent, multicultural citizens, venture infrastructure and corporate partners, universities, and inexhaustible energy. But here’s the thing: two-thirds of our commercial income comes from abroad. Asia, in particular, is aggressively probing for new engines of innovation. Share your comments…

On the Road: Printed electronics, flexible electronics

Covering printed electronics applications, technologies, and opportunities, the 6th annual Printed Electronics USA conference and trade show (this week December 1-4 in San Jose, California) is the world’s largest event on the topic. PARC will be presenting on materials characterization and optimization; application development from designing circuits to fabricating proof of concept; and full system prototyping that integrates printed electronics, conventional thin film components, and/or standard silicon circuitry. Visit Booth 12 from December 2-3 and/or attend our presentation on “Jet-Printing: From Drops to Electronic Devices” on December 3. To schedule an appointment or request a discount registration code, please contact More…

The 9th annual Flexible Electronics and Displays Conference and Exhibition (February 1-4 in Phoenix, Arizona) brings together key players in industry, startups, R&D organizations, and academic institutions – “the ideal milieu” for moving flexible electronics to the next level. PARC CEO Mark Bernstein will kick off the business and technical conference on February 2 with a keynote on flexible electronics as a strategic technology and PARC’s innovation model today. More…

People: PARC scientist awarded The Prize for Industrial Applications of Physics

The American Institute of Physics awarded the 2010 Prize for Industrial Applications of Physics “for developing proven technologies” to PARC’s Robert Street, “inventor of digital x-ray detector”. His pioneering work at PARC in the early 1990s led to the development of flat-panel digital x-ray detectors, a commercially available technology that replaced traditional film x-ray machines for many medical applications. Bob’s current research explores novel low-cost and large-area electronics for applications ranging from new flat panel displays to radiation sensors. Projects he has been involved with in recent years include ink-jet printing of organic electronic devices, constructing flexible electronic displays, developing technology for truck-size scanners for homeland security, and researching new solar cell structures. More…

Featured: PARC Forum on Stretchable Electronics

Electronic systems that involve transistors and other components on thin plastic or rubber substrates offer mechanical properties (e.g., bendability) and other features (e.g., lightweight) that cannot be achieved with conventional technologies. Examples of new device possibilities include electronic eyeball cameras and personal health monitors, where the electronics must conform to curved surfaces and stretch during use. Presented by John A. Rogers of the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, this PARC Forum talk describes the use of nanomaterials in integrated circuits that offer the electronic performance of state-of-the-art wafer-based devices but with the mechanical properties of a rubber band. The talk explains the remarkably simple materials science and physics of these approaches, as well as aspects of their use in various electronic systems. Watch online…

PARC In the News:

Volunteers Log Off as Wikipedia Ages – Wall Street Journal
PARC overflowing with new ideas – BBC News
What Your Phone Might Do for You Two Years From Now – New York Times
Algae Company #60 Takes Design Cues From… – Greentech Media
Printed electronics needs new design rules – Printed Electronics World
Stanford-led research helps overcome barrier for organic electronics – Stanford News
Palo Alto gets green recognition – Stanford Daily

Additional information

Focus Areas

Our work is centered around a series of Focus Areas that we believe are the future of science and technology.

Licensing & Commercialization Opportunities

We’re continually developing new technologies, many of which are available for Commercialization.


PARC scientists and staffers are active members and contributors to the science and technology communities.