News Releases

Feb.16,2011

 

DNP Achieves Doubled Luminance for Virtuagram(R), a 3D CG Hologram

Ideal for Anti-counterfeiting of Passports and Other ID Documents Requiring Simple and Quick Authentication

 

Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. (DNP) has developed a new technology for Virtuagram(R)(*1), a hologram made using 3-dimensional computer graphics (CG,) that achieves doubled luminance over conventional products.(*2)

DNP will begin marketing Virtuagram from February 16th, 2011, focusing on applications that require advanced security, including brand protection solutions and anti-counterfeiting measures for passports, national ID cards, driver's licenses, and cash vouchers such as merchandise tickets and gift certificates.

[Background]

Many companies in recent years have intensified efforts to strengthen security strategies to prevent the forgery of important documents, including cash vouchers, credit cards, and ID cards, and to fight the counterfeiting of brand products.

Since its initial introduction in 2003, DNP's Virtuagram has been adopted for a wide range of security applications, including anti-counterfeiting for cash vouchers (e.g., merchandise coupons, gift certificates) and ID cards, as well as brand protection. In 2008, DNP developed an advanced hologram product that offered enhanced security and more elaborate designs to make authenticity even easier and quicker. While the product gained wide acclaim for its effectiveness in anti-counterfeiting for passports, which requires high security, it had certain shortcomings: When holograms were transferred onto the sheets in booklets, such as passports, the roughness of the paper surface tended to reduce their luminance, making them difficult to view clearly.

In response, DNP developed, through use of new technology, a Virtuagram product offering twice the luminance.

[Virtuagram Features]

  • For the new version of Virtuagram, modifications in relief patterns on the hologram master increase reflectance by combining the latest CG technologies with high-definition electron beam lithography. This gives newly-developed holograms twice the luminance of holograms made using conventional CG technologies.
  • High-resolution 3D images allow at-a-glance confirmation of authenticity. Additional available authenticity measures include printing a layer of materials with specific optical properties over the hologram, allowing users to view the material with a special viewer.
  • The extremely high luminance of the hologram itself permits full-color reproduction of images with no additional coloring steps. This makes images especially difficult to copy and counterfeit using copy machines or scanners.
  • Virtuagram is available in a sticker, transfer foil, or patch(*3) format. It meets performance criteria for passport and ID card, requiring certification by printer manufacturers.
  • Virtuagram complies with China's "Administrative Measures on Supervision and Management of Anti-Counterfeiting Products," which require all anti-counterfeiting products to be registered before their use in China(*4), and with environmental standards for hazardous substance content, such as the European RoHS(*5) and REACH.(*6)

The following optional features can also be added to Virtuagram:

  • A previously-available feature in which rotating the hologram 90 degrees produces a light/dark image reversal, as well as a more advanced feature in which this effect occurs with 180-degree rotation.
  • Hidden text visible only when a laser beam is directed at the hologram.
  • Extremely fine text of 10 micrometers or smaller embedded into the holographic image and requiring a magnifying glass or microscope to confirm.

[Sales Price (excluding tax)]

  • Size 17 mm × 17 mm: from 2.4 yen/piece for 1,000,000-piece batch order

Please note that actual prices will depend on the type of label specification and optional features.

[Forward Looking Events]

DNP plans to strengthen marketing efforts for Virtuagram for various high-security applications, including brand protection and anti-counterfeiting of cash vouchers, passports, national ID cards, and driver's licenses. DNP expects sales of approximately 1 billion yen within the next 3 years.

 

(*1)  Virtuagram: Conventional holograms are produced by photographing full-scale models with special equipment. In contrast, Virtuagram is created by applying CG technology to record holographic images of 3-dimensional objects having complex configurations and positional relationships for which creating actual models would be difficult. Virtuagram also allows extremely high-definition images such as photos to be attached to the hologram for enhanced security and design.
(*2)  At least twice the luminance of conventional Virtuagram made by DNP.
(*3)  Patch: A heat transfer method that simultaneously transfers the protective film and the holographic recording layer onto surfaces of cards and booklets for high surface durability.
(*4)  Administrative Measures on Supervision and Management of Anti-Counterfeiting Products: Promulgated in November 2002, this law stipulates that any non-Chinese anti-counterfeiting technologies or products to be used in China must first be reported to the National Anti-Counterfeiting Technology Product Management Office, and then the relevant anti-counterfeiting technology and/or product must be registered before using them in China.
(*5)  RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances): This European Union (EU) directive defines limits on the concentrations of specified hazardous substances occurring in electrical and electronic equipment. These regulations have applied to all electrical and electronic equipment sold within the EU since the directive was enacted in July 2006.
(*6)  REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals): A comprehensive set of regulations concerning the registration, evaluation, authorization, and restriction of chemical substances, this EU measure went into effect in June 2007.
 
(**)  Virtuagram is a registered trademark of Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. in Japan and the USA.
 
(***)  Product price, specification and service content listed in this news release are current on the date of the announcement. This data may change without notice. We apologize for any inconvenience.