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Biodegradable, Single-Use Circuit Boards Printed on Paper

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Written by Jonathan Berisford | October 19, 2022

Because most computing technology is notoriously earth-unfriendly with its inability to be reused or recycled, researchers at the State University of New York at Binghamton have developed circuit boards printed on paper that can be safely disposed of after a single use, either by burning or naturally biodegrading. Me? I love burning things. Just not my hand on the stove like I did this morning making oatmeal.

The paper is first printed with wax to create channels, then heated, so the wax melts, permeating the paper. Next, conductive metal is screen-printed onto the board, followed by the application of conductive and semi-conductive inks and an electrolyte gel to create the board’s resistors, capacitors, transistors, and wiring. The final result? A functional paper circuit board that could be eaten in the event you’re captured by the enemy.

Do you think this is the technology they use in Mission Impossible for those self-destructing messages? I sure hope so because otherwise, those agents were inhaling a lot of harmful chemicals if they didn’t vacate the area within five seconds. Like their missions weren’t already risky enough!

[via YankoDesign]