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Toward Broad Commercialization of High-Quality, Three-Dimensional Image Holograms

Bayer MaterialScience AG, Bayer MaterialScience LLC and Canadian-based Ultimate Holographic Reproductions Inc. (UHR) announced today that they have entered into a joint development agreement. The goal of this agreement is to advance the broad commercialization of high-quality, true-color holographic images. Bayer MaterialScience is supplying color-sensitive photopolymers that are ideal for the mass replication of the true-color master holograms produced by Ultimate Holographic Reproductions. Full-color holograms have potential uses in a broad spectrum of applications, for example in the advertising industry, the packaging and entertainment sectors, product design and the manufacture of a whole range of high-quality print products.

“By joining forces with UHR, we are working with one of the world's leading developers of full-color hologram technology and a company with extensive know-how in the production of holographic masters and mass replication,” explains Dr. David Jurbergs, Holographic Application Development Manager at Bayer MaterialScience LLC. Peter Vivona, Vice President Marketing & Sales at UHR adds: “These photopolymers will enable us to produce full-color holograms on an industrial scale while also satisfying the strict requirements placed on commercial applications in terms of consistently high image quality and cost effectiveness.”

Although there have been many attempts in the past to produce holographic images suitable for broad market use, they usually failed due to the lack of appropriate materials for mass production. The image quality and color fidelity of those holograms also fell short of expectations because the complete production process was not yet fully developed. “We understand that a solid foundation in the entire value chain is necessary to meet the stringent demands of the global marketplace. The collaboration between UHR and Bayer MaterialScience creates an ideal basis for covering this demand,” comments Vivona. As part of this agreement, UHR plans on adapting their replication technology for use with Bayer MaterialScience photopolymers. Bayer MaterialScience aims to produce photopolymers for use in a broad range of holographic applications and offer hologram manufacturers an attractive alternative to existing classes of material that are difficult to process. Both companies believe that by working together they will expand the demand for high-quality, true-color image holograms.

The new photopolymer film that Bayer MaterialScience plans to launch commercially in 2010 has several advantages over other holographic materials. For example, it is easy to process and environmentally robust. It can also be exposed by laser light in one or more colors. “The three-dimensional images that are created by UHR have high contrast, excellent color and superb image quality. What’s more, with our material, there is no need for wet chemical or heat treatment to develop the holograms after they have been exposed,” says Jurbergs, who will be providing further details about the new photopolymer as part of a presentation he is to give on November 19, 2008 at the Holography conference “Holo-pack•Holo-print” in Toronto, Canada.

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