In Munich, Germany, from March 28th-30th 2017, the LOPEC exhibition proved that the interest in printed electronics continues to grow. The ninth edition of the international exhibition for printed electronics set new records across the board, while also showcasing numerous world-firsts. Concurrently, the LOPEC conference impressed with a top-class, highly international line-up, featuring speakers from Samsung and the European Commission.
Falk Senger, Managing Director of Messe München, was delighted with the result: “The record numbers of exhibitors and attendees clearly reflect that the industry is developing in the right direction. Printed electronics has reached new dimensions, as was plain to see at LOPEC this year.”
More than 2,500 participants from 47 countries came to Munich for the three days of the event, which equates to an increase of 20% compared to the previous year. LOPEC 2017 had a truly international feel: 54% of exhibitors came from abroad, with the best-represented countries after Germany being the Republic of Korea, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The event also played host for the first time to a 40-strong delegation from China. And the journey was certainly worthwhile, as the independent visitor survey conducted by forschungplus shows: 89% of respondents would recommend the event.
International innovation platform
Henri Rajbenbach, Project Officer and Senior Expert at the European Commission, summed up his visit to LOPEC: “Platforms like LOPEC help to ensure that the European technology sector keeps on innovating and retains its place among the world’s leading.” He continued: “The EU sees large-area electronics as the key technology for the electronics industry. To this end, we will support projects in this sector with an additional 40 to 50 million euro by 2020.” LOPEC broke new ground in terms of exhibitors and floor space, too, with 154 exhibitors from 17 countries representing an increase of four percent compared to last year's event. In fact, this year’s exhibition was also eight percent larger in terms of space: It was fully booked down to the last stand, with numerous series products on display alongside prototypes. These include a multi-functional jacket with electroluminescent lighting elements by Helly Hansen, an Audi TT with OLED tail lights, and a smart ring that notifies the user about whether they have gotten enough sunlight.
For Hans-Jürgen Lemp, Director Global Sales & Business Development New Platform at Merck, this year’s LOPEC was a huge success: “LOPEC is the marketplace to bring the “inventors” together with those, who are looking for new applications, thereby connecting the right people. LOPEC is driven by dedicated and committed people with a mission.”
OLED displays and lighting remain the driving force within the market. Dr. Jeremy Burroughes, Chairman of the OE-A (Organic and Printed Electronics Association), CTO at Cambridge Display Technology and Sumitomo Chemical Fellow, explained: “LOPEC clearly shows what the new OE-A Roadmap has revealed: The major industries, such as the consumer electronics and the automotive sector, are already integrating the technology into their products. This demonstrates the strong impetus for incorporation of our technologies into new application spaces.”
Conference: High-profile speakers and success stories
The LOPEC Conference is always an integral part of the event. Over three days, 182 expert speakers from the industry and research sectors presented the latest trends in printed electronics. Wolfgang Mildner, General Chair of LOPEC, said: “The main focus of the conference has definitely shifted in the direction of applications. The program featured numerous talks from representatives of leading global corporations, who shared their success stories and past experiences with printed electronics.” One of the speakers was Dr. Sang Yoon Lee, Senior Vice President at Samsung: “For the consumer electronics industry, flexible displays and wearables are the future. They create a unique user experience. LOPEC brings us one step closer to this future and helps us to get in touch with exactly the right technology experts.”
On the second day of the event, the winners of the LOPEC Awards were announced. The next LOPEC will take place in Munich, Germany from March 13th-15th 2018.