Teslin: An Environment-Friendly Alternative For Plastic Cards

Teslin: An Environment-Friendly Alternative For Plastic Cards

Plastic cards are widely-used items because of their lightweight, durable quality, making them ideal for IDs, bank cards (ATM, credit, and debit), keycards, as well as point-of-sale activation cards, among others. This convenient access to privileges and services makes the plastic card a staple in our daily lives. But these plastic cards are made out of PVC plastic, and while PVC is inexpensive and durable, certain chemicals used to make PVC pose a risk to the environment and to people’s health. A number of businesses have recognized the need for a suitable, more sustainable alternative to plastic PVC cards — and a new innovation called Teslin seems to be the ideal substitute.

Teslin substrate, commonly referred to as ‘Teslin paper’, manufactured by PPG Industries in Barberton, Ohio is a microporous, synthetic material that is soft, yet strong, and can absorb inks readily; has a high bond-ability, is water-resistant, and is highly printable, flexible, and durable. These characteristics make Teslin an ideal alternative for plastic cards — reducing health and environmental risks while offering the same quality and convenience as PVC cards.

Ultra durable
Teslin is able to withstand harsh environments and taxing processes, remaining pliable even in extremely cold temperatures and surviving heat of up to 200° C. Teslin can be steam pressed and dry cleaned — it is waterproof, resistant to abrasion and tearing, and stands up to a large assortment of chemicals.

Highly printable
Being a porous material, Teslin has a highly absorptive quality, allowing inks to set almost instantly, producing vibrant colors and awesome print definition. Teslin is compatible to most printing processes and technologies, and thus doesn’t require special inks or equipment. It can be printed on both sides, doesn’t crack upon folding, and doesn’t need an edge seal when laminated.

Uniquely designed
Teslin feels soft to the touch, and offers a valuable cushioning quality for embedded electronic applications. It remains flexible at temperatures down to -70° C, while maintaining heat resistance up to 200° C. Teslin has less reaction to static than other synthetic materials.

Inherently secure
Teslin forms adhesive bonds as much as 10 times stronger than those of other substrates — requiring no edge seals to produce durable, secure products, making it inherently tamper-resistant and tamper-evident. Teslin can also accommodate the embedding of security features within the material, allowing security system simplification and reduced costs for businesses.

Aside from regular ID cards, Teslin is also a preferred material in a variety of technology-focused applications, such as e-Passports and radio frequency identification (RFID) cards and labels.

Teslin might as well be the future of cards and identification systems, and it’s a great thing that it’s recyclable plastic material that provides for long-lasting, durable products, enabling reduction and conservation of resources.

This is a guest post by George Shaw. Addicted to anything and everything sustainable and recyclable, George is a freelance writer who occasionally does work for Cardprinting.us, an online provider of plastic cards and key tag printing services.

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Steve holds a degree in Environmental Engineering Technology from Humber College in Toronto, is a LEED Accredited Professional and a Certified Sustainable Building Advisor. He currently lives in Victoria BC and works as a green building consultant specializing in residential projects.


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