Label：Graphic Overlays, Technological Process
Apr 7, 20234202
1. What Is Graphic Overlay
Graphic overlay is a component that integrates graphics, text, and logos. The silkscreen printing makes that happen. The panel is equipped with double-sided adhesives of different materials. It plays a crucial role in our daily life. Furthermore, you can see it in industry, medical apparatus and other fields.
When talking about graphic overlay manufacturing, silkscreen printing comes first. The ink material does its job by silkscreen printing to get a good start. The silver paste material is formed on the sheet to form a flexible membrane circuit. It implies that the silkscreen printing is indispensable. We complete all the main elements of the product by this process.
There are two methods of silkscreen printing. One is front prints, and the other is back prints. There are five aspects of the printing: printing plate, scraper, ink, printing table and substrate. The printing plate needs to be made by the manufacturer, and it will be made into a panel pattern designed by the customer. This can be tough.
On the other hand, the working principle of silkscreen printing is simple. The ink is poured on the printing plate. The scraper applies pressure on the ink, and moves to the other end at a constant speed. At the same time, the ink will pass through the screen in the plate. The holes are extruded onto the substrate.
JRPanel supplies various kinds of graphic overlays. Some of them are concise. Text, lines, and color blocks of different colors are on it to indicate or distinguish functions. You can choose different materials and double-sided adhesive tape according to your own needs.
There are also a more complex ones, which are more beautiful and practical. Engineers develop them on the basis of the previous panels. Here is an ordinary graphic overlay. It is heated and pressed through a pressing mold. As a result, the button slightly raised to be a three-dimensional button.
This new button can not only accurately specify the range of the key body, improve the recognition speed, make the operator's sense of touch more sensitive, but also improve the decorative effect of the product.
2. Technological Requirements
The graphic overlay is printed with color ink on the back of the transparent polymer. Once the silkscreen printing is completed, and the raw material is cut into shape, this layer becomes the color mask layer. It is an integral part of the membrane switch, which indicates color and displays the function. It also plays a protective role.
As the top part of membrane switch, graphic overlay is responsible for the decoration and protection. Therefore, the material we use to make the panel should at least meet the following conditions:
· Good look
Sheet surface is smooth and glossy. There is no mechanical damage, scratches, inclusions, stains, and other surface defects.
· Well Climate adaptability
The graphic overlay is the surface layer of the membrane switch exposed to the natural environment. The panel material should be able to withstand certain natural environmental conditions. Deformation, cracking, aging and discoloration are not allowed.
· Good chemical resistance
The panel layer will likely come into contact with different chemicals. It should have some resistance to most common chemicals such as alcohols, ethers, mineral oils.
· Dimensional stability
Deformation is a bad thing. Extreme temperatures cause it. The graphic overlay needs to work without significant change in size within a certain temperature range (generally -40°C~55°C).
The graphic overlay requires long service life. The elastic deformation should be small. The elongation rate of the material is a vital index. Generally speaking, if the elongation rate is large, the elastic deformation is also large. The elastic performance is poor.
According to the above requirements, JRPanel chooses PC (Polycarbonate) and PET (Polyester) as material of graphic overlays. There are many benefits of these two substrates. We have duty to provide reliable products to customers.
3. Film in Graphic Overlay
We have talked about PC and PET. Those are the most commonly used films in graphic overlay construction. PVC is the third choice, but it’s not environmentally friendly enough.
The comprehensive index of physical and chemical properties of PC is good, and it gets along well with ink. It is the most popular material for graphic overlays. PVC is cheaper, compared to PC. It is widely used in daily supplies. PVC reduces the production cost, and it owns the better ductility.
PET has long service life, excellent corrosion resistance and wear resistance. And it's outstanding in insulation. We apply this material to instrumentation and home appliance. As we all know, people have high demands on these instruments.