Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Brilliant counterfeit protection

Date:
June 15, 2010
Source:
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Summary:
Counterfeit products create losses in the billions each year. Beside the economic damages, all too often additional risks arise from the poor materials and shoddy workmanship of 'knock-off' artists. Yet with the aid of fluorescing dyes, materials can be individually tagged and identified with certainty.

Beside counterfeit protection, the process is also suitable for an effective quality assurance: Here outlines characterize well-bonded and poorly bonded coatings on a function sheet. Such sheets are used to manufacture OLEDs.
Credit: Copyright Armin Okulla/Harald Holeczek

Counterfeit products create losses in the billions each year. Beside the economic damages, all too often additional risks arise from the poor materials and shoddy workmanship of "knock-off artists." Yet with the aid of fluorescing dyes, materials can be individually tagged and identified with certainty.

Related Articles


For quite some time now, product piracy has been affecting more than just consumer goods, like watches and designer clothing. The producer industry also has to combat bogus and qualitatively inferior materials. Specialized security features, like watermarks, bar codes, RFID tags and holograms label the products, and thus safeguard them from falsification, theft and manipulation. So when it comes to security features: the more complicated it is to imitate a brand, the more secure the system. A team of researchers from four Fraunhofer Institutes recently engineered a brand new process that is particularly forgery-proof: "We add various fluorescing dyes to the entire material," explains Dr. Andreas Holländer of the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP. "With the aid of the fluorescence, we can precisely ascertain specific characteristics, and thereby recognize if we are dealing with the original, and if the quality standards have been met."

Fluorescence can be found in certain organic dyes: Irradiate them within a certain wave length range, and they emit their own light with a greater wavelength. The type of luminosity -- i.e., wavelength and light intensity -- depends on the physical and chemical properties of the materials to which the dye was applied. Various dyes react to different properties, such as pH value or viscosity. For example, a certain dye glows in a tightly-interlaced resin more strongly than in one that is not as dense.

To make a product counterfeit-proof, the researchers therefore add multiple dyes to the material. "In this manner, an individualized marker emerges that is exceedingly difficult to imitate," says Holländer. Thanks to the slight dosing, it is virtually impossible to decode the type and quantity of the dye additives: just a few ppb (parts per billion) of dye concentrates suffice to mark the material. Another advantage: The counterfeit protection definitely cannot be removed. "Using conventional security features, the spot with the labeling can be eliminated from the material, theoretically speaking. But that approach doesn't work with our technology, since the dye permeates the entire material, and itself is a component of the identification label," says Holländer. Beside counterfeit protection, the process is also suitable for an effective quality assurance, such as with coatings: With the aid of various dyes, manufacturers can monitor the chemical composition, degree of dryness and the thickness of the coat during the production process.

The new technology has already passed the first practice tests: Researchers marked barrier sheets for organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and photovoltaics with dyes a development from the Fraunhofer Polymer Surfaces Alliance POLO. The process is basically ready to be used -- however, it still must be adapted to each material. A standard solution would also be contrary to the intention of the inventor: "One reason for the high degree of security of our technology is precisely because there are only material-specific solutions," reiterates Holländer.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "Brilliant counterfeit protection." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 June 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100614093627.htm>.
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. (2010, June 15). Brilliant counterfeit protection. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100614093627.htm
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. "Brilliant counterfeit protection." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100614093627.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) — IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) — A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Real-Life Transformer Robot Walks, Then Folds Into a Car

Real-Life Transformer Robot Walks, Then Folds Into a Car

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) — Brave Robotics and Asratec teamed with original Transformers toy company Tomy to create a functional 5-foot-tall humanoid robot that can march and fold itself into a 3-foot-long sports car. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Police Testing New Gunfire Tracking Technology

Police Testing New Gunfire Tracking Technology

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) — A California-based startup has designed new law enforcement technology that aims to automatically alert dispatch when an officer's gun is unholstered and fired. Two law enforcement agencies are currently testing the technology. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins