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Materials science

Unique wrinkles as identity tags

Spontaneously generated, random wrinkles of coatings on microscale particles have been found to be analogous to fingerprints — unique patterns with a wavy topography that can serve as unclonable tags for anti-counterfeiting purposes.

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Figure 1: Similarities between fingerprints and surface wrinkle patterns of microscale particles.
Figure 2: Sensitivity of wrinkle patterns in films to geometrical imperfections.

Jie Yin & Mary C. Boyce


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Correspondence to Jie Yin or Mary C. Boyce.

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Yin, J., Boyce, M. Unique wrinkles as identity tags. Nature 520, 164–165 (2015).

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