Taiwan’s Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) was again the recipient of a Wall Street Journal Innovation Awards, making it the first organization in Asia to be so honored three years in a row, said Janglin Chen, vice president and director of Display Technology Center (DTC), ITRI. Chen led a Taiwanese delegation to attend the award ceremony in Redwood City, California on November 8. Other winners and runner-ups included IBM, HP, Intel and Yahoo.
Chen told the World Journal that ITRI’s Spray-IT, an eco-friendly, thermal spray coating, and i2R e-Paper, an electronic paper technology to provide a re-writable, re-usable and environmentally friendly print medium, both received top prizes in the category of “Environment” and “Materials and Basic Science and Technology” respectively over more than 600 competitors worldwide. The Wall Street Journal carried a special report on ITRI’s innovative technology on October 17.
Tzer-Shen Lin, division director of ITRI’s Electronic Materials & Devices Research Group said that Spray-IT thermal insulation is a clear liquid insulation spray coating that can be applied to glass windows and other structures. It lets the sun in, yet reduces the heat, thereby not straining the air conditioning. It can be applied to large areas such as solar cell panels, the roofs of high rise buildings and surfaces, and is capable of reducing the temperature by up to 10 degrees Celsius. It is also more economical than the typical silver-based films, which are expensive to produce and cannot be applied without specialized equipment in a highly controlled environment.
In introducing the i2R e-Paper, Lee Yuh-zheng of ITRI DTC said the e-Paper is the first electronic paper technology to provide a re-writable, re-usable and environmentally friendly recyclable print medium to reduce traditional paper consumption. To print, users simply need a thermal printer which consumes minimal electricity without the need for ink cartridges. The heat generated from the printer interacts with the e-paper to capture the image. The print can then be erased when the i2R e-Paper is put back into the thermal printer device to swap out the old image. The i2R e-Paper was also awarded the 2011 R&D 100 Award from R&D Magazine for this technology.