A new shape-memory plastic that makes QR code labels look like Salvador Dali's famous floppy watch could prove useful in product and brand protection. Since codes can be read only when the labels are in their permanent, original shape, labels can store information that makes products tough to counterfeit. (Source: Bayer MaterialScience)
While researching and writing this, I kept wondering what would happen if it were possible to coming memory plastic capabilities with the self-healing characteristics of the plastic that indicates by a color change when it's been damaged: http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=242838 That would be one multi-function uber-material.
Good question, Greg. Since this is just out of R&D, there may not be any data on that yet. At least, I didn't see it mentioned. For one thing, it would depend on the type of plastic and its specific formulation.
As manufacturers add new technologies to their products, designing for compliance becomes more difficult. Prepare for the certification testing process. Otherwise, you increase the risk of discovering a safety issue after a product leaves the assembly line. That will cause significant time-to-market delays, be much costlier to fix, and damage your brand in the eyes of customers.
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