Next Big Thing – erasable e-paper
E-paper, that's the stuff inside ebooks right?
Not quite.The i2R e-paper, developed in Taiwan, is made to be used in the real world – for things like shop signs and train tickets.
What's the 'e' for then?
You won't find any analogue ink and mashed up wood here. Different colours are printed onto a plastic film using liquid crystals and a fax-machine style thermal printer. When you want to wipe the e-paper's contents, just slot it back through the machine and it's good as new.
That will make the tree-huggers happy.
It's a start – the erasing and re-using won't last forever but one sheet of e-paper should last 260 different prints.
That's 259 better than one.
You're getting it. E-paper is more expensive than the usual white stuff, sitting at $2 to produce one sheet for now, but researchers reckon that we won't be able to move for erasable paper in two years' time.