Technology overview: Near Infrared (NIR) dyes have been widely used in the entire industry. Currently, NIR dyes are used in such diverse fields as solar cells (dye-sensitized solar cells), BIO (Bio imaging), defense industries, thermal barrier film, PDP, eye protection. Despite the widespread use of NIR dyes in diverse fields, they are only produced in Germany, Japan, and the United States. In Korea, few research& development and production have been devoted to NIR dyes. The development of NIR dyes with an excellent durability is expected to be available for various sectors, resolve trade deficit, and enter the overseas market for exports. In addition, the original technology was obtained for the methods of synthesis and refinement from the technology development. Such technology can be applicable to the synthesis of medicine intermediates, as well as silk dyes.
Industrialization: In 2013, Kyung-In Synthetic Corporation (KISCO) supplied NIR dyes to a local maker of PDP filter. Starting from May 2014, KISCO has provided NIR dyes to a local company, the largest company in Korea. KISCO recorded its sales up to KRW 1.7 billion in the second quarter in 2014 from KRW 600 million in 2013. With the decline of PDP TV business, the company saw a sharp decline in sales. In 2015, however, it started to make mass-production of NIR dyes with the application of NIR Dyes to thermal barrier film, thus approaching KRW 400 million at present. The company is prospected to reap higher sales in the near future.
Problem-solving in industrialization: To commercialize NIR dyes, there were three technical problems and social ones as well. In technical aspects, the first problem was that KISCO’s NIR dyes had to have lower prices and higher performance than Japanese makers to obtain such industrialization. To solve this problem, the company developed the process technology for synthesis and refinement and achieved the improvement of the fineness and the targeted transference number, thus making it possible to implement commercialization. Second, to secure safety in the synthesis process, the company conducted research on the substitution of hazardous substances with safe ones. Third, to prevent harmful gases arising from the synthesis process, it sought consultations from several institutions and developed technology in an attempt to environmental problems. In social aspects, NIR dyes were mainly applied to PDP TV, but the PDP TV business declined, leading to the difficulties in industrialization. However, we applied NIR dyes to thermal barrier film and proceeded with a new project, in which NIR dyes are applied to products that enable the improvement of the characteristics of thermal barriers of vinyl houses, for new application.
Technology developer: Kyung-In Synthetic Corporation / +82-2-3660-7815/ www.kyungin.co.kr
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