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STTR Phase I: Controlled Phase Separation for Graphic Smart Card Display

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1010240
Agency Tracking Number: 1010240
Amount: $150,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: MM
Solicitation Number: NSF 09-605
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
KENT, OH 44240
United States
DUNS: 802688457
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Tod Schneider
 (330) 673-8784
Business Contact
 Tod Schneider
Title: DPhil
Phone: (330) 673-8784
Research Institution
 University of Akron
 Tod Schneider
302 Buchtel Common
Akron,, OH 44325
United States

 (330) 673-8784
 Nonprofit College or University

This Small Business Technology Transfer Phase I project shall develop and model phase separating materials for passively-driven graphical displays, which are needed for smart cards that can display graphic images. Nearly all consumer credit cards used today have no functional display. Since the numbers and security codes on the cards cannot be changed, fraudulent use is estimated to be as high as $40 per account annually. The current market for smart card displays is limited to segmented designs, but there is a growing need for smart cards to display graphical content such as characters, symbols, and images. The proposed work will: (1) enable encapsulated material formulations for graphic display use; (2) model the photopolymerization/phase separation process to predict conversion efficiency and residual contamination in the cholesteric liquid crystal (ChLC) at the University of Akron (UA); (3) test model predictions with characterized displays at both locations; (4) use formulations to make and integrate a 128x32 pixel graphic display in a smart card; and (5) jointly with a card manufacturer, integrate the display in a card and test to ensure that ISO specifications and customer requirements are met.
The broader impact/commercial potential of this project will be the availability of graphical smart cards for a variety of applications. Nearly all consumer credit cards used today have no functional display, which results in an increased amount of fraudulent use (estimated to be as high as $40 per account annually). Recently, segmented displays have begun to appear on some cards, as a means to change a security code. Segmented displays, however, are a limited solution, as the consumer market for smart cards is increasingly demanding graphical displays allowing the card to show complex images such as icons, faces, symbols, and characters. This project is focused on materials development for such a display; the resulting product will be able to be manufactured in high volumes and at low cost on existing manufacturing lines located in the US. The display technology to be developed can meet all the key consumer smart card requirements such as low power consumption, compactness, flexibility, and ruggedness. The technology is expected to have a tremendous impact as the established market for issued cards is huge: the global market is roughly 17 billion cards annually and growing.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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