Technological inventions have been taking a toll on the environment for a long time, and everyone is aware of the dangerous implications of these inventions. But to reduce the effects of technology on the environment, researchers all over the world are putting in every effort to find environment friendly alternatives.
Researchers from U.K are doing their bit by working on producing environment friendly circuit boards for mobile phones and other electronic devices. The SYMETA headed by Prof Yiannis Vardaxoglou at Loughborough University and funded by a $3.9m from EPSRC, plans to find new ways to build circuits without using any harmful elements and methods. This initiative is a part of a $21m investment funded by the EPSRC into doing research to find ways to eliminate the current challenges faced by science.
The SYMETA suggests using what they call “Metamaterials” for making circuit boards. Metamaterials are engineered composites with electromagnetic properties and are found in nature. These researchers aim at creating materials can be printed onto a surface through a nozzle then by using 3D printing techniques a high frequency circuit is to be made with the Metamaterials. This technique does not require any harmful chemicals and they also cut down on the number of stages/ steps involved in the manufacture of circuits, thereby saving time and money.
The number of mobile phones manufactured and sold, are elevating by a substantial number every year and so is the production and sales of other electronics for various industries. All electronic gadgets require circuit boards but today these are produced through extreme methods which involve harmful chemicals, high temperatures and huge volumes of water which obviously causes damage to nature.
Since the current manufacturing process involves numerous steps you can picture the amount of water being wasted. Just imagine the amount of chemical wastes produced and the amount of water used up as a result of the production of circuit boards all over the world!!
The biggest advantage of Metamaterials is that they can be manipulated to create circuit boards of unusual shapes and can also be used to create different frequencies for an antenna. This Metamaterial technology can be applied to various sectors such as aerospace, defence and healthcare.