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News

High-quality materials from Bayer MaterialScience are responsible for t the EXTRACT tweezers

Bayer MaterialScience AG : 31 March, 2007  (Company News)
The light focused on the tips of the tweezers comes from LEDs integrated in the body of the tweezers together with a battery and other electronic components. The arms are made of the transparent polycarbonate Makrolon. They are coated with a special polyurethane coating, which creates the
The light focused on the tips of the tweezers comes from LEDs integrated in the body of the tweezers together with a battery and other electronic components. The arms are made of the transparent polycarbonate Makrolon. They are coated with a special polyurethane coating, which creates the “SmartSwitch System” when used in combination with the polycarbonate. The coating was developed in cooperation with Bayer MaterialScience’s partner company KRD Coatings GmbH. It is abrasion resistant, elastic, transparent, and chemically extremely stable. The coating’s key feature is its electrical conductivity, achieved using an electrically conductive polymer as an additive. When the user touches the transparent, coated tweezer arms, the circuit is completed and the light goes on. The multi-functional material concept also offers advantages in terms of energy efficiency. The LEDs only light up as long as necessary, a factor that increases their service life and reduces the load on the battery.

The body of the tweezers is made of Desmopan 385 S. This thermoplastic polyurethane has very stable mechanical properties and protects the internal components against compressive loads, impact stress, dust and splashing water. At the same time, the material is soft and smooth, ensuring that the tweezers sit comfortably in the hand.

The interdisciplinary team behind EXTRACT was headed by Ralph Schneider, at that time a mechanical engineering student, as part of his degree thesis on project management. “We place great value on the creativity and know-how found in universities and colleges, which is why we are always on the look-out for worthwhile collaborations,” explains Foltin. Today, Schneider is now engaged in other projects that the Creative Center is working on in the area of “SmartSwitch Systems.” The project has already been a success, with a number of companies having already expressed an interest in installing these “switchless switches” in their products.
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