OSNABRUCK, GERMANY - A touch-sensitive, functional, high-gloss wood-based panel that can be used in cabinets and furnishings in places like kitchens or hospitals has been introduced by Felix Schoeller Group, a German maker of specialty papers.

To create the paper, sensors are inkjet printed onto a specialty paper, which is then laminated to a wood-based panel, creating an invisible switch. Among applications suggested for the material is a control of household appliances, switching lights and radios on and off, or operating faucets.

Felix Schoeller Group says its speciality inkjet decor papers operation, Technocell Dekor, already produces customized electronic designs.

Decorative Laminates Now Incorporate Printed Electronic ControlsIn producing the electronic papers, Technocell Dekor uses a large-format inkjet printer in its applications lab to print conductive ink to form a touch sensor on the decor paper. A standard high-pressure laminating process is used to press the printed paper onto a decor paper, and onto a wood-based panel. A sensor created in this way was linked to an electronic circuit that can be used to perform on/off and dimming functions.

The demonstration model was exhibited for the first time at LOPE-C 2014, where Felix Schoeller says it met with great interest.

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