The LASERROLL project is examining the high-resolution laser structuring of printing and embossing rollers for the roll-to-roll production of printed electronics and microstructured and nanostructured films.
The aim of the project is to develop a new type of laser processing technology that will increase efficiency and resolution in the production of precision printing cylinders.
Unlike conventional, multi-stage processes, the process being investigated in this research project is designed so that embossing tools can be structured in a single stage, with no need for postprocessing. To achieve this aim, a new ultra-short-pulse laser technology with wavelengths in the UV range is being used that fully vaporizes material with a depth resolution of 50‑100 nm and lateral structural sizes of 1 µm and does so without damaging the surrounding material.
This significantly higher structural resolution generates a disproportionately large volume of data, and efficient data processing algorithms are also being developed in the project to ensure this data can still be processed.
As it simplifies the production of printing cylinders and significantly increases resolution, the direct laser structuring of printing rollers will help bring advances in various fields of application such as printed electronics, light guide technology and security/safety-relevant packaging.
Both projects are subsidized by the European Union and the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.