Japanese startup invents a marker pen with conductive ink allowing the user to draw electrical circuits. Holly Rubenstein reports.
It's being tipped to revolutionize the electronics industry. A Tokyo-based startup has invented a pen with conductive ink, which can draw electrical circuits. Coined the "Circuit Marker", it replaces normal ink with silver-conductive ink conventionally used in electric circuit printers. Users can draw on paper embedded with electronics, and when the ink dries it becomes instantly conductive. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) AGIC INC'S CEO, SHINYA SHIMIZU, SAYING: "Traditionally electric circuits are solid and thick and it was very difficult to be put up across the walls or the floor. However, with our "Circuit Marker", you can simply draw it... For example, you can use it for security purposes by embedding an entire building with electric sensors. We are thinking of connecting everything by printing electric circuits on all surfaces in the home." And the marker is expected to save engineers money too. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) AGIC INC'S CEO, SHINYA SHIMIZU, SAYING: "Electric circuits are generally pretty expensive, with prototypes easily costing 50,000 to 100,000 yen. It also takes some time to make, like a week. With our company, we only need to print it, making it much easier to try new creative ideas." It's hoped they will also be used for education, making circuits more fun and approachable, encouraging students to shine at school. Bright sparks can purchase the Circuit Marker, along with A4-size Circuit Paper, for under $40.