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Soccer '

Bayer MaterialScience AG : 02 August, 2004  (Company News)
For the start of the German soccer season on August 7, 2004, Bayer 04 Leverkusen offers season tickets in a credit card format for its home games at the BayArena.
They are now made of Makrofol® ID, a plastic film system from Bayer MaterialScience AG which is already used all over the world for a large number of driver's licenses and other types of ID documents such as the EU driver's license and the Swiss ID card. The current design of the card is very simple, but this is only the first step for Bayer 04. In the future, the club intends in particular to utilize the benefits and possibilities offered by cards of this kind with an integrated chip.

'One possible application is automated entry systems with card-reading terminals which prevent people from having to stand in line at the stadium turnstiles. Another useful service might be an integrated cash function, which would enable supporters to make cash-free purchases in the fan shop or pay for their hotdogs in the stadium,' says Wolfgang Holzhäuser, Managing Director of Bayer 04 Fussball GmbH.

The risk of these cards being misused if stolen is extremely slim. Not only are the data on the chip electronically protected, but a laser beam can be used to personalize the card with a photograph of the owner, his or her signature, seat number and, if required, further information, making the card worthless to the thief. The laser imaging process also ensures that the image quality is excellent and that the card is abrasion-resistant.

'Laser printing on Makrofol® delivers far greater contrast than can be achieved with other plastics. The photograph, for example, is particularly clear,' says Norbert Kinzel, Head of the Film Group at Bayer MaterialScience. The cards are also secure against forgery. The individual layers of the film system adhere to each other so strongly that they cannot be separated without destroying the entire card. This means that forgers are not able to replace layers which contain information.

The good functional properties are a further strength of the film system, which is based on the polycarbonate Makrolon®. They ensure that the card has a long lifespan. The film has good flexing endurance and therefore returns to its original shape after significant deformation when kept in the back pocket, for example. 'This is another reason why Makrofol® is the ideal material for producing smart admission tickets for all types of sporting events,' states Kinzel.

It is also important to remember that such tickets are highly sought after by collectors. Who wouldn't like to have tickets in their display cabinet from the year in which their team won the championship? These cards would be of particular interest to collectors if several versions with a variety of decorative features were in circulation. This is where the excellent print quality of Makrofol® really pays off. It also makes it possible to incorporate colorful holograms on the card.
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