Pad printing is a printing
process that can transfer a 2-D image onto a 3-D object.
This is accomplished using an indirect offset (gravure)
printing process that involves an image being transferred
from the printing plate (cliché) via a silicone
pad onto a substrate (surface to be printed). Pad
printing is used for printing on otherwise impossible
products in many industries including medical, automotive,
promotional, apparel, electronics, appliances, sports
equipment and toys. It can also be used to deposit
functional materials such as conductive inks, adhesives,
dyes and lubricants.
Physical changes within the ink film
both on the cliché and on the pad allow it
leave the etched image area in favor of adhering to
the pad, and to subsequently release from the pad
in favor of adhering to the substrate (material being
The unique properties of the
silicone pad enable it to pick the image up from a
flat plane and transfer it to a variety of surface
(i.e. flat, cylindrical, spherical, compound angles,
textures, concave surfaces, convex surfaces).