Clever Nanochromic Displays Offer Versatility and Cost Reduction

The combination of Autoflex films and nanochromic inks provide Mapp Systems with the perfect solution for leading edge integrated membrane keypads.

MAPP Systems has just showcased a cutting edge nanochromics membrane keypad that dramatically cuts production times, yet offers displays with the optical qualities of printed pages readable even at acute angles and with negligible power consumption.

The new displays are fabricated with specialist screen printing inks and use the market leading film Autoflex EBG187 from MacDermid Autotype. This is a high quality, UV ink printable, hard coated polyester film with a pleasing gloss finish that enhances the quality of the finished display, while at the same time offering outstanding scratch and chemical resistance.

Prior to the launch of nanochromics displays, building an integrated control panel was a highly complex operation requiring the creation of different layers incorporating each individual component, as well as the LCD displays. Furthermore, conventional LCD displays are power-hungry too, so systems' portability was inevitably compromised.

A nanochromic display relies on specialist inks containing a reflective layer that gives them a solid white background as well as integrated viologens. These are organic electrochromics molecules which change colour with the passage of very low voltage currents, without the need for backlighting. The method has been around for a while, but suffered initially from weak coloration and long switching times, issues that have now been resolved by Ntera, the manufacturers of the nanochromic inks used by Mapp Systems.

Stephen Morse of Mapp Systems explains, "The nanochromic inks are screen printed on the film just as we would with normal screen printing inks, but thanks to this clever technology we can now achieve full integration with the overlay and therefore a massive reduction in processing times. Our work in this sector opens up new opportunities, particularly for items such as supermarket shelves displays and packaging. The merging of this ink technology with the proven optical and physical properties of the MacDermid Autotype films allows us to offer the best possible deal around."

Emma Scowen, Marketing Manager at MacDermid Autotype adds, "Supporting innovation has always been one of our key strengths. We positively encourage our customers to experiment with our films and with Mapp Systems we have a tangible demonstration of the success of this synergistic approach."

For further information contact Jenniffer Avenell, MacDermid Autotype,
Grove Road, Wantage, Oxon. OX12 7BZ. Tel: 01235 771111. Fax: 01235 771196.



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