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Product piracy: glass marking fights counterfeiting


For the last few years, the rate of counterfeiting has been increasing in almost all areas. Apart from financial losses in the billions, counterfeited medications can be fatal. For this reason, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) is working on a flexible marking and identification process which, among other things, can be used to make medications in glass ampules counterfeit-proof.

Using a robust and industrially established marking laser, it will be possible to both individually and quickly mark products with a distinct certificate of authenticity.

LZH logo and chessboard pattern with diffractive structures.

Photo: LZH

This can be done during the packaging process. This is the vision of the project GLaSIDeE. Scientists at the LZH are working on a process for anti-counterfeit marking on both flat and curved glass surfaces.

Unique fingerprints

The laser marking process can be used to generate decorative writing, a number, or a two-dimensional bar code directly in the glass. The markings are only a few nanometers deep.

Flexibility is the main advantage, since each part can be individually marked, for example with a serial number, without effort or extra costs.

Up to now, there has been no clear identification process for markings on glass. Thus, in this project a special process should be developed with which each part is given its own individual fingerprint. The LZH is also developing a reading process for invisible markings.

In combination with each other, they will be able to reach a higher anti-counterfeit rate than conventional processes.

The project „Glass Marking using the Laser as a Safety, Identification and Design Element“ (GLaSIDeE) is subsidized by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy within the Central Innovation program for Middle-sized Businesses.

Melanie Gauch | Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V.
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