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Laser Activated transparent ink?

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  1. May 17, 2016 #1
    Hello everyone,

    I was just wondering if there is any type of transparent ink that could be permanently activated by heat or intense light (laser).

    Preferably I am planning to use a laser light to activate the ink.

    I am trying to coat a piece of metal (or paper or etc.) with this ink (which is invisible). Then I want to write on the coating using a laser light. I am supposed to shine a laser beam to the coating in order to draw fine lines/drawings. The laser beam is supposed to activate the ink (reveal its color) as it pass through. The laser is supposed to activate the color of the ink and lock it (meaning, the color is supposed to stay on coating after laser has passes through).

    I was just wondering if this is possible and if there is an ink with this kind of characteristic or if I can modify an ordinary ink to behave like this.

    Thanks
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 17, 2016 #2

    DrClaude

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    Staff: Mentor

  4. May 17, 2016 #3

    berkeman

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    Can you describe the application?
     
  5. May 19, 2016 #4
  6. May 19, 2016 #5
    We have these white hard blocks of foams. Something like these ones:

    http://www.cdxghm.com/View_en.aspx?id=123

    The idea is to soak the surface of these blocks into our transparent solution (ink/dye + etc) and then use a laser to write/draw on the surface of these blocks and then let them dry.
     
  7. May 19, 2016 #6

    berkeman

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    Why not just use a standard ink jet printer setup?
     
  8. May 19, 2016 #7
    well let me be more precise. I am working on a college project and directly drawing on the foams is not exactly the point of this project. I am trying to develop a laser printing method in order to use on a sheet of multi-layered photonic crystal. I am going to use these foams to demonstrate a proof of concept to my prof. Imagine these foams to be covered with a thick plastic cover similar to:
    https://www.amazon.com/Plastic-Tablecloth-Table-Cover-Clear/dp/B00L27EPD8
    and we want our laser to go past through this layer and hit the sponge sheet. and write on the foam without damaging the top plastic layer.
    I am coming up with these scenarios as I am writing this now. But what I am actually working on is: a sheet of polymer based paper that is made of 4 layers and I am trying to write/engrave on the surface of second layer so the plan is to some how inject the solution to the second layer and then emit the laser from the top (laser is supposed to go past first layer) and then write on the surface of second layer.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  9. May 19, 2016 #8

    DrClaude

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    Can't you use the same kind of dyes they use for the paper?
     
  10. May 20, 2016 #9
    hmm this is really interesting idea. From the wikipedia link that you gave me, I read something about Polaroid ZINK that is used on the thermal papers. this might work. I need to think about this more. thanks
     
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