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News

Overmoulding technology unleashes new design potential

Du Pont Engineering Polymers : 29 October, 2004  (Company News)
Picture a bubble in a bottle. That
“This breakthrough technology, consisting of a glass globe encased in DuPont™ Surlyn®, combines the chemical inertness of glass with the total design freedom and practical benefits of our advanced polymer. These include exceptional durability – Surlyn® is non-breakable and resistant to chips and marring – light weight and a pleasant sensual touch,” says Michel Decodts, Global Development Programme Manager, DuPont Cosmetic Solutions.

“The multitude of design options made possible by this development is very exciting,” he explains. “Intricate shapes and decorative effects, such as sophisticated colours, metallic and fantasy coatings, frosted and unusual tactile properties – most of which would be impossible or extremely difficult to achieve in glass only are easily produced by overmoulding with Surlyn®. Last but not least, there is the important advantage of cost-effectiveness.”

The idea to overmould glass came from Estée Lauder, which holds a patent on the concept. DuPont’s European Technical Centre in Meyrin (Geneva), Switzerland, with its broad technical and materials know-how, actively participated in the prototyping and commercial scale-up of this original concept and resolved one major technical challenge: to overmould glass at high injection pressure and elevated temperature without breaking or displacing the (hollow) glass insert. Surlyn® was the natural answer as it is extremely transparent and bonds easily to glass, making the bonding line almost invisible, even in thick-walled parts.

The first commercial applications of this overmoulding technology are an eyeliner and lip tint produced by MBF Plastiques of Oyonnax, France, for Estée Lauder. Both products were launched in the USA and Europe at the end of summer 2004. There is no doubt that this innovative technology has wide applications for all types of packaging using glass and will open the door to exciting design concepts.
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