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Fabric lights up the market

Features, Graphics | January 1, 2008 | By:

New technologies bring light—and the message—to fabric.

Businesses operate on a 24-hour clock today. Capturing the attention of customers once the sun goes down requires ingenuity, creativity and staying abreast of new technologies. Since commerce after dark is too big of a market to ignore, new cutting edge technologies are offering new solutions to traditional backlit fabrics.

Oracal USA, Black Creek, GA recently introduced two vinyl film products certified by CeeLite LLC that use the company’s cutting edge LEC (light-emitting capacitor) technology. CeeLite LEC panels can turn any surface into a light source. The paper-thin LEC panels do not generate heat and require very little power for illumination. CeeLite panels use a LEC structure with Sylvania phosphors placed between a series of electrodes. Powered by AC voltage, the electricity generates a changing field within the phosphors that causes the phosphors to emit light.

Craig Campbell, product applications manager at ORACAL sees tremendous opportunities ahead, “The growth potential is truly immeasurable. By providing the only CeeLite-certified inkjet media that is currently available, our Orajet Series 3880 is generating interest on a global scale. Projects using the combination of these technologies has allowed graphic providers to think outside the box and put illuminated images where never thought possible.”

Blue Ocean Worldwide, a creative services and production firm in New York, N.Y., has used CeeLite technology to create illuminated Absolut Vodka bus vehicle wraps, signage for the Washington Redskin’s Fedex Field and indoor billboards for the Westin Hotels on display in New York’s Grand Central Station subway.

David Stadler, ceo of Blue Ocean states, “I truly believe this product will completely change the industry. It’s such a versatile product that can do so many things.” Blue Ocean uses litho, screen or digital printing to apply graphics. Limitations are few but include addressing size limitations if seams are needed.

Stadler often has to calm overly enthusiastic customers after they see CeeLite presented. “Once that is panel on, people’s minds take off and they have lots of ideas. You have to sometimes slow them down a little bit.”

Lou Dzierzak is a freelance writer/editor who covers technical topics on a regular basis for numerous trade journals.

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