Printable batteries in cards today, clothes tomorrow?

The batteries are printed using a silk screen printing process in which a rubber lip presses the organic semiconductor materials through a screen onto a flexible substrate. The lithographic-like technique uses templates to pattern layer upon layer–each about the width of a human hair–of battery components until enough bulk has been achieved for a particular application.

Printable batteries for smart cards would weight less than 1 gram and measure less that 1-mm thick. The organic materials produced 1.5 volts per cell, like conventional batteries, but use no harzardous chemicals like the heavy metals in conventional rechargeable and alkaline batteries.

via – Paper-thin batteries set to arrive by 2010.

If you can print power sources like this for batteries, think of how you could weave these into clothing. Anything from the frivolous — totally cool fashion that would glow, light-up, move, etc. to practical uses — spy cam shirt, chemical detectors, audio identifiers. If these can be solar powered, or even better, use our body heat for power, then it would be something.

The printable batteries from German manufacturer

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