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Colour-shifting ink

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Uploaded on May 17, 2011

Rainbows without pigments offer new defence against fraud

Scientists from the University of Sheffield have developed pigment-free, intensely coloured polymer materials, which could provide new, anti-counterfeit devices on passports or banknotes due to their difficulty to copy.

The polymers do not use pigments but instead exhibit intense colour due to their structure, similar to the way nature creates colour for beetle shells and butterfly wings.

These colours were created by highly ordered polymer layers, which the researchers produced using block copoylmers (an alloy of two different polymers). By mixing block copolymers together, the researchers were able to create any colour in the rainbow from two non-coloured solutions.

More information:
http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/mediacentr...

The video shows photonic polymer materials made by mixing two block copolymers in different ratios to achieve a single lamellar period and one particular colour. This is akin to making structural colour like mixing paint, using this approach we can cover the entire optical spectrum with just two diblock copolymers.

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