A project seeking funding on Kickstarter will allow you to print electrical circuit boards on paper using an inkjet printer.
We've seenand ; the logical next step appears to be conductive ink cartridges for an inkjet printer.
AgIC — which means Ag Inkjet Circuit — is a new type of ink that can be used in a home printer. It contains microscopic flecks of silver, which makes the ink conductive, meaning you can design a circuit board using software on your computer, then print out as many functional copies as you like — without damaging the printer.
The idea, creator AgIC Inc said, is to allow rapid prototyping. "Prior to fabricating a permanent printed circuit board (PCB), you can prototype the circuit pattern using AgIC print," the Kickstarter campaign reads. "If you find your prototype circuit works fine, you are good to go. You can send out the same layout file to a PCB fabrication service. Save your time and money of re-ordering PCBs."
It can also be used for experimentation, teaching kids about circuits and DIY projects for a rainy day.
Kits to turn your home inkjet printer into a circuit board fabricator — including the basic printing kit and developer devices such as transistors, LEDs, switches and resistors — are available for pledges starting at US$299, with US$599 getting a printer thrown in too (although you could probably find one cheaper). Lower reward tiers include conductive markers, customised LED business cards and components.
At time of writing, the campaign had hit US$23,149 of its US$30,000 goal. Stretch goals include double-sided circuits at US$100,000, and insulation coating at US$300,000.
Head on over to the AgIC Kickstarter page for more info and to pledge your support.