Nanotechnology Functionality in Flexible Packaging: New Methods of Manufacturing, 2006 PLACE Conference
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While commercial products that utilize nanotechnology can be found in apparel, sporting goods, medical bandages, and catalytic converters, the emergence of nanotechnology is at it’s infancy as evidenced by the growth in patent applications, venture capital funding and worldwide government investment. The unique structural and functional properties of multi-layered films deposited in micro-structured patterns are theoretically well established but commercialization has been limited by the lack of available cost effective manufacturing techniques. By incorporating a lattice of one material with line dimensions of 100nm between layers of similar or dissimilar materials, a film’s mechanical and optical properties can be modified to enhance stress balancing, directional reflectance, scattering, absorption, and interference that is applicable for visual enhancement, shielding, sensing, or tracking. Each layer in these multi-layered films requires precise control of rate, angle of deposition, stress, and density with new manufacturing techniques under development including Laser Assisted Vaporization, Structure Zone Model Patterning, and Metal Inkjet. In this presentation, the design, fabrication and incorporation of nanometer sized functionalities for unique flexible packaging applications will be discussed.