TactoTek and DuraTech Industries are working to create a North American supply chain for injection-molded structural electronics parts

April 27, 2022

OULU, Finland, and LACROSSE, Wis.— Custom graphics manufacturer DuraTech Industries (www.DuraTech.com), a printed electronics specialist with expertise in in-mold electronics (IME), has licensed a technology from TactoTek to produce IME parts with increased electronic functionality, according to a joint release from the companies.

Finland-based TactoTek® (www.tactotek.com) is a developer of injection-molded structural electronics (IMSE®) technology, which the company describes as “an advanced form of IME that incorporates electronic components, such as LEDs for illumination, and system-in-package (SiP) electronics for intelligence, within 3D injection molded structures.”

DuraTech will create IMSE parts at production facilities in the United States for delivery to customers in North America and around the world. Prominent use cases of the IMSE technology are reported to include human-machine interfaces (HMI), connectivity, and electronic styling features for automotive, smart home, and appliance markets.

“DuraTech is a great match for TactoTek licensing—we focus on advancing and industrializing IMSE technology, and they focus on producing parts for their customers,” said TactoTek CEO Jussi Harvela, in the release. “By making IMSE solutions more accessible in markets beyond automotive, and with production in North America, our relationship opens new business opportunities for DuraTech and further confirms TactoTek’s go-to-market licensing model for IMSE technology.”

Parts manufactured by DuraTech have resonated with numerous markets, including home appliances, medical, industrial, automotive, and consumer electronics. Aided by TactoTek’s IMSE technology, DuraTech will produce parts that offer even more advantages to its customers. The technology is said to expand the capabilities and use cases of in-mold electronics parts for smart surfaces.

“Our customers have been asking for more electronic functionality in IME parts, and for that,  we need to work with TactoTek,” said DuraTech Industries President Peter Johnson, in the release. “TactoTek is the clear leader in advancing the technology domain by integrating electronic components within smart surfaces.”

As a “Design and Innovate” licensee of TactoTek IMSE technology, DuraTech has the rights to sell, design, and produce parts that use TactoTek’s intellectual property. The IP is reported to include 44 patent families with more than 130 granted patents, as well as extensive trade secrets for designing and producing IMSE parts.

TactoTek’s Design and Innovate licensing includes rights to commercially use TactoTek intellectual property; training materials for designing and manufacturing IMSE parts; and detailed design and production information for TactoTek reference designs. It also includes rights to commercially use information on materials, components, and material stacks verified to automotive and aviation industry standards for producing IMSE parts, and engineering support services.

“For DuraTech, becoming a TactoTek licensee expands our offerings for existing customers and opens new opportunities to do what we do best: reliably mass produce high quality parts,” Johnson said.

In addition to specializing in in-mold electronics and printed electronics, DuraTech offers screen, digital, or flexo printed products, including in-mold decorating labels, overlays and pressure sensitive products, and membrane switches. The company’s USA manufacturing facility is ISO 9001:2015 certified.

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