Shepherd Color Co. debuted silver-based glitter colorants at NPE 2003.
Starlight pigments are silver-coated glass microspheres or special glass flakes, said technical sales representative Jeff McCarthy. The Cincinnati firm said colors can be added to create a wide range of special effects.
McCarthy said Starlight is available in particle sizes of 14-238 microns. Sparkle effects can be created at levels as low as 0.01 percent, Shepherd claimed. And since they are based on silver, they have an inherent antimicrobial effect and can be blended with polymers in a dry form rather than a paste because the particles do not pose an explosion hazard like aluminum flakes do, according to McCarthy. Starlight can also impart some electrical conductivity to a polymer.
Shepherd also supplies a ceramic-based pigment that reflects infrared light, helping to keep plastic objects cooler in sunshine. Half of sunlight's energy is in the infrared spectrum. Arctic IR reflective pigments can protect vinyl profiles, polymeric roofing membranes, auto parts and other exposed goods.
The firm's main business has been mixed-metal oxide pigments sold in North America and through offices in Brussels, Belgium, and Melbourne, Australia.