New technology to decorate 3D plastic molded parts
We’ve developed a new technology now available for licensing. Our process enables the production of 3D plastics molded parts with decorated surfaces - without the need to pre-shape the decorated film. What’s more you can use various types of inks.
Can you help?
Is the decoration of surfaces your thing? Could you be interested in licensing this technology? If so, read on…
From dolls to footballs, there are thousands of three-dimensional products out there that need some form of decoration or printing. Traditionally this has been done through a technique known as In-Mold Decoration (IMD), which involves printing a transparent film that is then transferred to the open mold of an injection-molding machine.
Once the mold is closed, a plastic composition is injected, effectively ‘sandwiching’ the ink between the film and the plastic.
The process works perfectly well apart from two key points: The film needs to be re-shaped – an additional process that requires time and effort. Also, from an environmental perspective, only polyurethane ink can be used – bad for the environment and severely limiting the manufacturer’s options.
At DSM Engineering Plastics we’ve developed a completely new type of process technology that enables manufacturers to decorate the surfaces of 3D plastic molded parts without the need to pre-shape the decorated film.
What’s more, manufacturers can now use a wide variety of inks in this new process, with no compromise on adhesive qualities.
If you’re a manufacturer, our innovation now opens the door to a whole world of possibilities – not least the ability to use different and original decorative techniques on products – whether hard or soft-touch performance.
We’ve tested the new technology extensively. The surface of the obtained molded part can exhibit non-slip properties; the film remains intact at the openings in the molded film on the part (e.g. for push buttons).
There’s even the potential to produce waterproof housings for plastic parts…
- It’s ready to go-to-market: This technology has been extensively tested and is now ready for commercial launch
- It’s patented: The technology is protected by patents in several European countries (EP-1372927-B1) and corresponding patents in CN, JP, US, SG and KR
- It’s available: We’re looking for licensees to work with us on this exciting new development