Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Chemical and Paper Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Margaret K. Joyce

Second Advisor

Dr. Paul D. Fleming

Third Advisor

Dr. Marian Rebros

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only


Over the last decade, a number of organizations around the world have embarked on research in the field of printable electronics1. For printed electronics, the demands on substrate properties are much higher than conventional graphic printing. For graphic printing, the human eye only needs to be satisfied, but for electronic printing, electron flow continuity must be satisfied2.

The purpose of this research was to investigate the use of plastic pigments to improve the surface properties of paper for printable electronic applications. Coatings were prepared using hollow sphere plastic pigments (HSPP) of different particle sizes, void spacing, and shell thicknesses. The coating properties were compared to a coated label paper from the same base paper. The papers were calendered and the roughness, Gurley resistance, and surface energies of the papers compared. After printing with a water-based silver ink, electrical resistance was measured. HSPP particle size significantly affected all the coating properties, but did not significantly affect the resistance of the printed line. This is mostly likely due to the large size of the silver flake ink in comparison to the micro deviations of the coating layer, and low Gurley resistance and surface energy preventing sufficient ink penetration.

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