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Let there be light: rlc demonstrates new smart packaging concepts with the “Lumen” series

From logos to delicate lettering – when illuminated, even the finest elements can attract the consumer’s attention and leave a lasting impression.

Hanover, 13  January 2016. With its “Lumen” design series, rlc | packaging group is presenting new packaging ideas that attract attention with a combination of lighting effects and special designs. Electronic features printed onto the packaging highlight the shape, colors and individual details of various packaging types. Different switch mechanisms activate the specific lighting feature, surprising the customer directly at the point of sale or when the package is opened later – the second moment of truth.

To appeal to today’s sophisticated consumers, packaging needs to be more than just attractive. It must surprise them, communicate with them, and ideally add value by way of its smart design. That’s why the subject of “smart packaging” is becoming increasingly significant. True to its “Rethink Packaging” motto, rlc | packaging group works continuously with the packaging design agency brandpack on developing uncommon ways to make packaging attract attention. The new “Lumen” design series focuses on the targeted use of light in conjunction with individual  packaging designs.

“When developing the various designs in the ‘Lumen’ series, our goal was not only to illuminate the packages – that would have been too simple,” says Manfred Schmidt, Head of Structural Design & Concepts at brandpack. “Instead, we integrate the lighting into our overall design concept – for example, by illuminating a specific logo. This helps us to achieve new and striking effects that impress the consumer.” These effects are based on an innovative technology that allows an integrated circuit, battery and switch to be applied to the packaging during the printing process. The advantage is that, unlike previous lighting solutions, the individual components no longer have to be integrated in the packaging by hand. This approach makes illuminated packaging suitable for mass production.

Bright variety
rlc is currently presenting four different designs in its “Lumen” series. “Signs” is a design featuring a perforated logo that is indirectly illuminated from behind. When a customer picks up the package, a pressure sensor on the back activates the lighting – adding an element of surprise at the point of sale.

The “Shades of Gold” design immediately captures customers’ attention with its hexagonal features: LEDs are positioned along the front of the packaging, behind individual honeycomb-shaped segments in gold for accentuation. When the package is touched, a sensor on the back responds to moisture in the skin and serves as a switch.

The “Illumination” design adds a glamorous appearance to the bottle inside the package to surprise the consumer when the box is opened. As soon as the top is released, a photosensitive sensor activates LEDs in the base of the package – illuminating the entire bottle from below.

The “Shadowplay” design makes use of a semi-transparent cellulose material and draws its inspiration from traditional shadow puppetry, in which an object or figure is displayed against an illuminated surface. Here too, a pressure sensor on the back activates the lighting, which then illuminates the bottle inside the box from behind. This makes the bottle’s silhouette appear on the front of the package, like on a movie screen.

Successful start
The batteries hold enough energy for up to two full days of lighting and have a shelf life of up to six months. In addition to the lighting element, the “Signs” and “Illumination” designs feature a soft-touch film and relief coating that create a unique feel, while the front of the “Shadowplay” packaging features a laser engraving. “In developing our designs, we incorporated findings from consumer research in order to position the sensors at the right places on the packaging,” explains Schmidt. With the help of customers, the company plans to continue expanding upon its ideas. “At rlc, we continually rethink packaging and functional features. The concepts we are currently presenting are the initial promising designs for smart packaging solutions. They can be easily combined with conventional finishing technologies and integrated into many existing or new designs.”

See more about Lumen here!

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