Innovation has always been one of our three corporate values. It remains core to our beliefs and attitudes to this day. Every new member of staff is given our written principles, one of which states ‘there is always a better of way of making our products’. We operate on two levels of innovation, iteratively developing our products with small improvements and at the same time entertaining the wild blue-sky ideas that most often fail, but occasionally succeed with disruptive consequences.
We started Photocentric with the invention of packaged photopolymer called imagepac back in 2002. Today it is still the only successfully commercialised package of photopolymer widely recognised as the most efficient way to make small flexographic printing plates or stamps in the world. We have invented imagebox exposure units, imagepac xtra sachets with integrated backing sheets, imageblack negatives direct from inkjet printers, image enhancing coloured negatives, Costa very large format automated stamp processing machines, stampmaker low cost stamp making machines and visible light active photopolymers.
Recently, in 3D printing, we have invented Liquid Crystal LCD 3D printers, sand, metal and ceramic 3D printers, continuous printing in visible light, novel chemistries providing higher tensile strength, higher modulus, higher heat deflection, and a number of other material properties we have improved. Our aim is to be at the forefront of the drive to create functional parts so that 3D Printing can be used successfully for small to medium volume manufacturing.
RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
Photocentric is a blend of a manufacturing company and research institute. We currently employ 15 scientists based in Peterborough in the UK who are either working to improve our products or are looking into potentially new disruptive products. We are going to establish a research centre in Phoenix as well. We are doing research into photopolymers, making better flexographic printing plates or stamps, but primarily into advancing the technology in 3D printing, in machines and in photopolymers right across the spectrum from 355nm right up to 460nm.
Our research has given rise to a growing library of patents that protect our innovations