SABIC unveils two new LEXAN™ PC Films for secure ID cards
Here at the CARTES & IDentification show, Booth 4N062, SABIC’s Innovative Plastics business today introduced two new breakthrough Lexan™ polycarbonate (PC) film technologies for identification (ID) cards that help simplify integration of additional security features needed to combat identity theft and counterfeiting. New Lexan SDCX co-extruded film and Lexan SC92E flexible hard-coated film provide solutions to the challenges of constructing ID cards and security documents with more and thinner layers and complex manufacturing. Several years after SABIC’s successful introduction of the Lexan Secure ID film portfolio, this expansion of its security product offerings with Lexan SDCX and SC92E high-performance films clearly demonstrates the company’s commitment to identity protection technologies that benefit smartcard manufacturers and consumers alike.
“Identity theft and the risk of counterfeiting call for increased functionality and innovation in electronic ID card design,” said Lennard Markestein, global marketing director, Specialty Film & Sheet, Innovative Plastics. “These two new Lexan film technologies are critical additions to our ID card film portfolio, providing our customers significantly higher productivity in card production while incorporating a laser-engravable layer and a brand new option to create more sustainable cards with longer useful life of the ID cards.”
Lexan SDCX co-extruded film combines a core layer of white opaque or transparent Lexan film with a clear, laser-engravable cap layer to avoid the challenges of handling separate thin film layers. Lexan SC92E hard-coated film for card overlays surpasses standard PC film in durability, including scratch and chemical resistance, helping to extend useful life and reduce resource consumption.
Co-extrusion Solves Challenges of Ultra-thin Layers
As more sophisticated security features are incorporated into the latest electronic ID cards and documents, additional layers are required to construct them. Thus, the individual card layers become thinner – down to 50 microns or less – and the manufacturing process becomes more complex and challenging. Lexan SDCX co-extruded films solve these challenges by combining a very thin, laser-engravable layer with a thicker white opaque or transparent layer. This film permits high-quality, cost-effective laser engraving, including high-contrast personalization with a photo and signature of the cardholder. The print image inside the card cannot be modified without damaging the card.
Lexan SDCX films also provide outstanding resistance to heat and frequent bending, as well as minimal distortion. These films are produced in a 10,000 clean room environment. They are available in gauges ranging from 30-75 microns for the laser-engravable layer and from 120-275 microns for total thickness.
Hard-coated Lexan Film Stands Up to Wear and Tear
Lexan SC92E one side flexible hard-coated film has an excellent abrasion and gouge resistance compared to uncoated polycarbonate film. It also achieved a very good rating of HB (ASTM D3363) in the pencil hardness test, showing high resistance to scratching in everyday use. The product also helps the card surface maintain gloss and transparency over a longer period. One of the strengths of this overlay film is the excellent flexibility of the hard coat; a 1/8” Mandrel bend is possible without cracking or damaging the coating. Even after frequent bending, cards return to their original shape. These features not only extend the card’s service life but also better protect security features inside it, such as passport photos, signatures, personal data, and holograms, over a longer period to combat counterfeiting and misuse.
The hard coating also offers resistance to abrasive cleaning agents and to the chemicals found in sun creams, cosmetics, oils, greases and fuels. Another important feature of this coated film is the ability to be laminated under high pressure and temperatures of up to 190C without any loss of properties. Lexan SC92E films are available in thicknesses of 100 and 175 microns.
Potential applications for these new SABIC films include electronic ID cards, military, government and police ID cards, passport data pages, green cards, driver licenses and border crossing cards.
SABIC’s other Lexan SD high-performance PC film grades with the potential for manufacturing electronic ID cards and security documents include:
- Lexan SD8B14 film for clear overlays or intermediate layers, offering high optical quality and easy processing, including die cutting, printing, and applying CLI/MLI lens structures;
- Lexan SD8B24 bright white film for core layers, providing high opacity even at thinner gauges; and
- Lexan SD8B94 clear, laser-markable film, which can be used as the top or middle layer and provides grayscale graphics for high security personalization.
For additional information on SABIC’s products for the security industry, please go to www.sabic-ip.com. For technical product inquiries, please contact us at www.sabic-ip.com/prtechinquiry.
About Saudi Basic Industries Corporation
Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) ranks among the world’s top petrochemical companies, and is a global market leader in the production of polyethylene, polypropylene, advanced thermoplastics, glycols, methanol and fertilizers. SABIC manufactures with a global footprint in Saudi Arabia, the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific. The company operates in more than 40 countries across the world with 33,000 employees worldwide. It has significant research resources with 18 dedicated Technology & Innovation facilities in Saudi Arabia, the USA, the Netherlands, Spain, India and China. SABIC recorded a net income of SR 21.59 billion (US$ 5.73 billion) in 2010, and sales revenues totaled SR 152 billion (US$ 40.5 billion).
About Innovative Plastics
The Innovative Plastics strategic business unit of SABIC is a leading, global supplier of engineering thermoplastics with an 80-year history of breakthrough solutions that solve its customers’ most pressing challenges. Today, Innovative Plastics is a multi-billion-dollar company with operations in more than 35 countries and approximately 9,000 employees worldwide. The company continues to lead the plastics industry with customer collaboration and continued investments in new polymer technologies, global application development, process technologies, and environmentally responsible solutions that serve diverse markets such as automotive, electronics, building & construction, transportation, and healthcare. The company’s extensive product portfolio includes thermoplastic resins, coatings, specialty compounds, film, and sheet. Innovative Plastics (www.sabic-ip.com) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC).
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™ Trademarks of SABIC Innovative Plastics IP B.V.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Innovative Plastics Media Contacts
Specialty Film & Sheet
Bergen op Zoom, The Netherlands
Tel: +31 164 291605
Agency Media Contacts
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