Hologram Origination - Design & Production

Hologram Origination From Your Artwork

3DZ can produce a hologram from your artwork and we are more than happy to advise and give guidance on how to achieve the best results. If you prefer we can create artwork for you based on your own design ideas and criteria.

A hologram can be surprisingly affordable and we believe your return on investment will be paid back many times over and on multiple levels. For you, it helps protect your brand, product and services. For the end user it shows you care by guaranteeing quality, safety and authenticity. 

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Hologram Types

Whilst not all types of 'Hologram' are actually holograms, they share many of the same characteristics, in that they are all based on a diffractive relief pattern or micro / nano structure . How this structure is generated depends on the technique and what equipment is used. Generally speaking this is determined by the effect and features that are required or what level of security you wish to employ within your design.

Some of the latest equipment used is very similar to that used in the semiconductor industry including electron beam lithography, ion-beam etching and optical lithography. These technologies tend to be used for very high level security applications such as bank notes.

Much more widespread and recognisable are conventional techniques such and classical or 'analogue' holography which requires the skill and experience of holographer and diffractive dot-matrix.

Common 'effects' or design features can include 2D imagery, Flip (where one image will change to a different image at a certain viewing angle) 2D/3D imagery (two dimensional layers with depth or parallax between them), Volumetric 3D or combinations of all the above.

Additional Features & Functions

A Hologram label or sticker can incorporate additional features, functions and information. Common additions include laser ablated sequential numbering, hidden images, laser reveal, QR codes amongst others.

Dynamic kinetic movement is also a common feature .

Different origination methods such as e-beam allow for additional features such as text and other optical elements and structures at the nano scale level. 

The Process (a brief overview).

The origination technique/s employed will have been determined at the design requirement stage.  Once we have approved artwork, the process begins. 

A Master 'Hologram' is created either digitally or by analogue means. Once this master is generated, several replicas are made before a second master is produced in a 'step & repeat' process, where multiple copies of the hologram are combined on to a single 'plate' in a format applicable to the  appropriate production equipment, which is typically determined by the end substrate to be used and production volume. 

Once the final master is finished, embossing 'shims' or directly etched cylinders are made, these are the equivalent of printing plates / cylinders and can be made from Nickel, Aluminium, glass or a special polymer. These are then placed on a micro embossing machine then directly embossed into a special coating on the embossing substrate and embossed using heat and pressure or the film is coated with a UV curing lacquer and embossed or relief transferred into the lacquer and UV cured in an instant where the relief structure is replicated from the shim or cylinder in the lacquer on the film. Once the film is embossed it goes on to a label press where adhesive is applied together with a release liner (backing paper), kiss cut, then sheeted, slit into reels or die cut into single individual labels.