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An Interview with Eliot Gomez, Business Development & Emerging Products Manager, UES, Inc.

An Interview with Eliot Gomez, Business Development & Emerging Products Manager, UES, Inc.

UES, Inc. — Founded nearly 50 years ago, UES, Inc.’s vision is to become a renowned scientific research and development organization. We’re proud of how our scientists continue to bring scientific innovation to the industry and the warfighter. Our history is deeply involved with delivering scientific research services and technical expertise in several disciplines for the Department of Defense. We also seek to commercialize select technologies into products. ELMNT™ is one of those technologies (www.ues.com/elmnt).

Q: Eliot, tell us about your role at UES and the focus of your organization in creating ELMNT?

A: I’m the Business Development and Emerging Products Manager. My role is to assess the commercialization potential of research our scientists and DoD partners create and develop.

Through a collaborative effort with our client, the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL), we created and developed ELMNTTM which is a new, best-in-class conductive ink that enables wearable electronics to be tougher and more comfortable, while offering robust ease of design and fabrication.

Q: You are a very strong supporter and a recognized leader in flexible and hybrid electronics manufacturing. How did you find your passion for this emerging technology?

A: I am a scientist with an entrepreneur spirit, and I have a passion to work at the intersection of research and commercialization. How does our technology solve an unmet need? How do we advance the state of flexible and wearable electronics? How do we better protect our soldiers, equip our athletes, and advance our health system with our inventions? That is what drives me and our team.

Q: What is a key innovation that will enable widespread adoption of FHE (Flexible Hybrid Electronics) and related technologies, and what application areas are you working in?

A: ELMNT is a prime example of how research at AFRL used material innovation to solve a huge challenge in FHE. Self-healing electronics was the original intent of our research in this area, and once we realized our product performed extremely well when stretched — that is it did not change resistance up to an amazing 7x its original length — we knew we were onto something. That level of robustness is unheard of in the industry and meets a need for wearable electronic.

Our stretched technology is made possible through a patented technology that creates a liquid metal network architecture, allowing it to strain but not increase resistance. The network architecture works like the old telephone handset cord, it can retract and recoil back into its original length.

We’ve developed many prototypes – stretchable/wearable USB cables, capacitive touch sensing (more on this HERE) for virtual reality, heated textiles, etc. We are proud to say that we launched our blade coating and screen-printing ink this year and we have several large companies trying it out for their application!

ELMNT ink is easily integrated into textiles. The low profile of the ELMNT traces makes it comfortable and nearly undetectable to the user. UES continues to investigate wearable capacitive touch sensing devices to make better tools for pilots in virtual reality training, on-body monitoring, or machine/human interfacing.

Q: You have been an active member of NextFlex and have participated in a variety of ways. What has the membership experience been like for you?

A: NextFlex is immensely valuable to us for understanding the needs of the industry and allowing us opportunities to team with companies in this space.  We enjoy being a part of this manufacturing institute that is paving the way in this industry.

www.ues.com/elmnt

ELMNT Liquid Metal Ink Capabilities Highlights – YouTube