PC films simplify identification card manufacturing

Bergem Op Zoom, The Netherlands – Sabic Innovative Plastics has launched a pair of PC films for identification (ID) cards designed to simplify the integration of additional security features needed to combat identity theft and counterfeiting.

Lexan SDCX co-extruded film combines a core layer of white opaque or transparent Lexan film with a clear, laser-engravable cap layer so that separate thin film layers do not have to be handled. According to Sabic Innovative Plastics, Lexan SC92E hard-coated film for card overlays surpasses standard PC film in terms of durability – including scratch- and chemical-resistance – helping to extend the useful life of ID cards and reduce resource consumption during their production.

As more sophisticated security features are incorporated into electronic ID cards and documents, additional layers are required to construct them. Thus, the individual card layers become thinner – down to 50 microns – and the process for manufacturing them becomes more complicated and challenging.

These films could solve these problems by combining a 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 the signature of the cardholder. The print image inside the card cannot be modified without damaging the card.

The films also provide good resistance to heat and frequent bending, as well as minimal distortion. The films also possess good abrasion- and gouge-resistance compared with uncoated PC film, which means the card surface maintains gloss and transparency over a long period. This feature extends the card's service life and improves the protection of security features inside it – such as passport photos, signatures, personal data and holograms – over a longer period compared to conventional alternatives to combat counterfeiting and misuse.

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