CHICAGO (July 31, 4:30 p.m. EDT) — Integral Technologies Inc. believes its highly conductive ElectriPlast will become the premier material for next-generation wireless antennas, according to a presentation by Thomas Aisenbrey at NPE 2006.
“Each pellet contains all of the ingredients needed for a finished product” and is moldable to any shape, according to Aisenbrey, chief technology officer and general manager of Integral Technologies in Bellingham, Wash.
NPE is the “first time for many people in the plastics industry to look at and touch [ElectriPlast] prototypes,” he said. Aisenbrey gave Plastics News an advance copy of the presentation.
The U.S. Patent Office has issued 11 ElectriPlast patents, has allowed five others yet to be issued and is reviewing 93 applications.
Versions of homogenously blended ElectriPlast contain micron-conducting doping elements, any of more than 15,000 base resins, time-release features and dispersion additives.
Integral was incorporated in 1996 and, as a development-stage company, focuses on the ElectriPlast technology including its new PlasTenna antenna formulas.
PlasTenna “acts as a highly conductive radio-frequency sponge — absorbing, transmitting and allowing electrical energy waves to excite electrons into meaningful currents with maximum efficiency,” he said.
During the show, Aisenbrey demonstrated the technology by directing a remote control car with the antenna embedded in a roll bar instead of a whip, and walkie-talkies minus the traditional unwieldy rubber duck antennas.
Other prototypes included a light-emitting-diode sign with ElectriPlast circuitry, a radio enclosure for an in-dash automotive application, connector bodies, acoustic-dampened headsets and numerous electronic products and devices. Integral showed the LED sign initially during Lightfair 2006 in Las Vegas May 30-June 1.
ElectriPlast is useful in manufacturing cable and wire. “For most products, the average weight is 40 percent less than aluminum and 80 percent less than copper,” Aisenbrey said. ElectriPlast “can mimic electrically any metal on the planet.”
Brainstorming a ground plane solution led to the invention of ElectriPlast in 2001.
“Tens of thousands of micron conductors are acting in parallel with one another in a controlled uniform matrix structure,” he said. The resulting highly conductive polymer contains and allows movable charges of electricity and “maximizes the polymer's ability to spread a unique omni-directional charge.”
He said most ElectriPlast formulations have a specific gravity ratio of 1.64 with some formulas as low as 1.2. Those compare with copper's ratio at 8.95 and aluminum's at 2.71.
ElectriPlast's thermal conductivity far exceeds that of conventional or other conductive plastics.
Integral views technology licensing as its initial revenue source and the company intends to rely on third parties for manufacturing. In March, the firm reached a patent license agreement with Heatron Inc. of Leavenworth, Kan., for applications in the heating and LED markets.
Integral is pursuing agreements to supply ElectriPlast to wireless device manufacturers and many others.
Popular Science magazine included ElectriPlast in its “Best of What's New” list for 2004.
Investment firm Wellington Management Co. LLP of Boston raised about $5.7 million in gross proceeds from a 2004 private placement of Integral common stock and warrants and, as of Feb. 12, controlled 16 percent of Integral's common stock.
Integral Technologies trades as an over-the-counter bulletin board stock. The company has not generated any significant sales and views 2006 as its go-to-market year.
Among officers and directors, principal owners are William Robinson, Integral's chairman and chief executive officer, and William Ince, chief financial officer.
Dow Chemical Co. underwrote the NPE Flexible Film and Packaging conference session that Aisenbrey addressed June 19.