Using innovative manufacturing with a combination of hybrid micro and nanostructures for enhanced banknote security.

Exclusive to the government and banknote industry, Nanotech’s KolourOptik platform delivers movement, 3D depth, and multiple colours in a wide array of custom design options that capture and hold the user’s attention as they inspect and authenticate a banknote or government document. Let’s dive into its’ unique features!

BACKGROUND: Recognizing that existing security features were mature and there was a lack of innovation in the market, Nanotech saw the opportunity to develop a new advanced OVD platform. The platform consists of three categories of optical structures: micro-structures, sub-wavelength plasmonic nanostructures, and a hybrid of the two.  Nanotech was one of the early pioneers for OVDs based on plasmonic structures.  Plasmonic structures on their own offer an interesting feature for banknote windows due to their colour switching from reflection to transmission modes. However, it is difficult to impose more interactive features in plasmonic features.  In recent years, lens-based features have introduced highly interactive movement and 3D features, however they are limited to single colour icons and offer minimal customization and design flexibility. Combining shallow/thin microstructures with plasmonic colour pixels overcomes these limitations and creates a much more flexible platform for feature design.

CURRENCY PROTECTION: Multifaceted nano-optic features require multi-stage EBL originations, and specialty manufacturing processes, the complexity of which serve as a considerable deterrent to currency counterfeiters. Pure plasmonic colour pixels patterned on ultra-thin microstructures create the thinnest, full colour 3D movement security stripes and threads that are impossible to emulate with lenticular or holographic technologies.

NEXT-GEN SOLUTION: The development of KolourOptik’s nanostructure platform required extensive nanotechnology research and development supported by specialized, expensive, highly advanced manufacturing equipment housed in a Class-100 cleanroom. This unique combination of technology and experience creates a barrier to entry such that the resulting products are highly secure.

VISUALLY SUPERIOR: Nanotech’s KolourOptik plasmonic platform delivers colorful, 3D parallax “always on” security features that work in any lighting condition. Combining and applying these visual effects to printed banknotes represents a paradigm shift in the technological advancement of overt security features.

HIGH SPECS, LOWER COST: Recent emerging technologies superimpose multiple features which typically increase thickness and/or increase the number of materials required, leading to greater manufacturing difficulty, lower yields, and ultimately higher costs for banknote printers, governments and central banks.

Nanotech’s KolourOptik platform overcomes these issues by offering resolutions of up to 254,000 dpi (100nm “dots”) with perceivable image resolutions as high as 25,400 ppi (1 pixel per micron) and a thickness of <5 microns.

NEW FEATURES: Nanotech’s innovation for the banknote industry is based on tailored plasmonic nano-structure arrays, each exhibiting an independently unique structural colour, adjacently placed along the contours of a microstructure to form striking effects. Employing this technique, a single thin layer of arrays can be arranged to produce multiple overt features such as 3D parallax effects, fluid motion, “ON/OFF” colour transitions, and high definition artwork. Nanotech’s KolourOptik platform also supports a wide range of covert, forensic, and machine-readable features.