FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, GERMANY — A German producer of screen-printed decorative films for insert molding featured a new demonstration part at Fakuma 2014 — an alarm clock with a touch-movement-sensitive surface.
Dirk Lange, sales manager at BÖ-LA Siebdrucktechnik GmbH, said the in-mold decorated part combines capacitive sensor technology with printed features and uses just a single plastic foil that is preformed and back molded.
Radevormwald, Germany-based BÖ-LA says the clock is a third generation version, following 2-D versions shown at Fakuma in Friedrichshafen in 2011 and 2012, with not only curved surfaces, but real 3-D-shaped surfaces. The 3-D-sensitive-touch technology is compatible with all common film types and surfaces, whether hardcoats, matte or gloss, anti-reflection coated or soft touch, according to the company.
Other products included a film insert molding (FIM-O) solution that produces self-illuminating 3-D moldings that are illuminated from within by organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs). This was demonstrated with an automotive navigation equipment display frame demonstrator.
That project is supported by European Union regional development funds and the Ziele2.NRW program to stimulate the regional competitiveness and employment in the Federal German state of North Rhine Westphalia. Partners in the project with BÖ-LA are Kunststoff Institut Lüdenscheid (KIMW), Cologne University, LED/OLED materials company Soluxx GmbH in Cologne and the ZOEK GmbH center for organic electronics, also in Cologne. The base touch-sensitive technology comes from the Linz, Austria-based company Plasticelectronic.
Also on display was a “touchskin” washing machine panel that incorporates 40 touch sensors, achieved with use of 40 micro-control operated light emitting diode (LED) touch sensors that are combined with the printed decoration — all within one plastic foil.