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New Colors And Effects For Injection-molded Components
Nov 12, 2007
Stilettos has a rich red glow that gives components made of the polycarbonate Makrolon® a red lacquer or patent leather look.

Leverkusen, October 2007 – Color has an appeal that provokes an emotional response. It is a striking element in successful product design, and that is true of plastic parts too. That is why Bayer MaterialScience AG, one of the leading global manufacturers of engineering thermoplastics, developed Fantasia, a technology program for coloring plastic parts that is specifically aimed at designers. “In our global Color Competence Center (CCC), we constantly develop new colors and effects and are inspired by the latest design and fashion trends,” explains Ciro Piermatteo, manager for innovative color technologies at Bayer MaterialScience. The latest example of this “trend scouting” can be seen in well over 20 new products for Leda, a technology for color compounding that is designed for the large-volume production of injection moldings.

For the cool-looking metallic color series ASTER®, the CCC in Newark, Ohio, U.S., has created three new effects. Area 51 is a dark, nickel-like hue featuring flashes of green, gold and purple that pop up out of the metallic color, giving it an alien appeal. Cadet is a chromatic play of dark, lustrous metallic colors. The basic hue is a dark, cool blue-gray. Iguana is a green that hovers on the edge of gray. An effect additive causes the metallic particles in Iguana to glisten in a fascinating way.

The CCC in Newark has also produced six new colors that follow the latest trends in industrial design, covering an extremely wide range of applications. Goji Berry is an Asian-inspired muted red, while Grotto is a very dark blue. Stilettos has a rich red glow that gives components made of the polycarbonate Makrolon® a red lacquer or patent leather look. A very subtle pink effect similar to blusher is achieved with Tickle. Torte is a dark, chocolate brown, while Traffic is a yellow with a tinge of orange, reminiscent of traffic lines painted on roadways.

The CCC in Filago has also developed new Leda effects such as the Bubble product family. This is a response to the trend for colored plastic components that are interspersed with bubbles and are either opaque, transparent or translucent. The “bubble effect” is achieved with glass beads of various sizes. It can be used to produce lamps or shower doors, for example. Illumina is tailor-made for manufacturers of panels for interiors and trade fair applications. This is a translucent color that appears opal-white from the front but from other angles continuously changes from red to blue via green. Starfin creates high-gloss colorful glistening and shimmering effects in various colors on the surface of the component. This product family is also an alternative to metallic effects and was developed for housing parts for IT equipment and consumer electronics, for instance. SuperNova is a new version of Luna, a special effect that illuminates plastic parts far removed from any power source. Illumination is achieved using a phosphorescent additive that charges itself with light in daylight and gradually outputs the stored light in the dark. SuperNova is a powerful luminous white light that is ideal for emergency lighting systems in public buildings or on public transportation such as buses, aircraft and trains.

Bayer MaterialScience’s Color Competence Center provides designers and processors with a wide range of services. “We want our partners to make optimal use of the full range of design options opened up by Fantasia,” says Piermatteo. The service provided includes the correct choice and use of the various color technologies, but also collaborative project work for customer-specific development of colors and effects.

Information on the new Leda effects and colors, and contact details of experts from the Color Competence Center can be found at www.bayerfantasia.com.