Microscopic and invisible
ID Tags can enable individual
identification using colloidal
Join us in considering the ideal form of a sustainable society with this new technology
that increases the traceability of products.

Contact Us

  • Description

    Partners with an interest in invisible ID Tags using colloidal crystals who can collaborate with us to create new businesses and services

  • Products used

    Invisible ID Tags made possible by colloidal crystals


  • ・Companies with goods for which they would like to provide traceability support and authenticity determination using ID tags attached to those products
  • ・Companies that handle luxurious goods such as jewelry and watches in particular that need ID tags that do not impair design
  • ・Companies seeking ID tags easy to attach to all products whether new or secondhand
jewelry with Microscopic and Invisible ID Tags

Technology That Will Contribute to the Sustainable Society of the Future

We have developed invisible ID Tags utilizing colloidal crystals. The growing momentum for sustainability worldwide is in the background of our development of this product. We are entering an age when support for traceability is being sought in all products.
We are aiming to utilize these invisible ID Tags in luxury industries that handle high-grade fashion products and similar in particular as our latest initiative. It is possible to attach these micro-sized ID tags to products without impairing their design. They are also effective in determining the authenticity of products. We need co-creation partners to work together with us to realize a sustainable society by further increasing the number of industries and products to which these tags can be applied in the future.

Trend for Traceability Is Spreading around the World

The momentum for sustainability is currently growing worldwide. Against this backdrop, the concept of Digital Product Passport (DPP) is progressing in the EU in particular.

The concept of DPP involves recording and releasing manufacturing information, design information, usage state, and other data. The purpose of this is to promote, for example, the use of products for a long time and the reuse of raw materials.

The most recent plans seek support for traceability starting with clothes, textile products, electronic devices, and other goods with a high environmental burden. It is expected that support for traceability will be sought in all products sold in the EU in the future. We believe this trend will then spread to Japan as well.

Image of Traceability

Encoding the Optical Properties of Colloidal Crystals

Development of ID Tags Using Ultra-small Colloidal Particles

Under these circumstances, we have focused our attention on the development of a new type of ID tag that can support traceability in a wide variety of products. Technology that forms colloidal crystals makes that possible. Colloidal crystals comprise colloidal particles of sizes from nanometers to micrometers, smaller than the diameter of a human hair, which are arranged in an orderly manner.

Colloidal Crystals Colloidal Crystals

Reading and Encoding Special Patterns of Transmitted/Reflected Light

When we irradiate light on those colloidal crystals, that light is strongly transmitted/reflected in a specific direction to form a pattern. If we artificially generate and combine colloidal crystals with different distances and arrangements between the particles by giving the particles an electric charge, the crystals with different properties at each point generate different patterns. We can then read and encode those patterns.

We see the utilization of these colloidal crystals as ID tags to be one way in which functionality and market needs match. We believe that this is a technology that can greatly contribute to the development of a sustainable society and economy in the future.

Special Patterns of Transmitted/Reflected Light

Microscopic and Invisible ID Tags

Various markers and tags are currently being used to identify products. Among the tags that can individually recognize products, these ID tags are characterized by their small size and transparency. We have succeeded in artificially generating virtually transparent colloidal crystals by modifying the distances and arrangements between the particles. Furthermore, these ID tags utilize Murata Manufacturing's unique advanced technology.

The encoded patterns use light to authenticate products instead of radio waves. Therefore, they are also characterized by being easy to apply to metal products. In addition, although there are other technologies that authenticate products with light, these tags use reflective diffraction light (incident light reflected at an angle) instead of simple reflected light. This means another advantage they have is that they are also easy to apply to shiny materials.

Microscopic and Invisible ID Tags Microscopic and Invisible ID Tags

Hopes for Utilization in Luxury Industries

Invisible ID Tags can support the traceability of various products. It is hoped that these ID tags will be utilized in luxury industries such as fashion, jewelry, and watches in particular. It is possible to attach these microscopic and invisible ID tags to products without impairing their design and without being noticeable even in micro-sized products. They can also be used to determine the authenticity of high-grade products actively distributed on the secondary market (buying and selling of secondhand goods).

looking for Invisible ID Tags on jewelry

Furthermore, it is physically difficult to embed conventional RFID and similar technologies afterward in products that did not previously have electronic tags attached like products sold in the past and secondhand goods. However, invisible ID Tags have the advantage of being easy to retrofit. We believe the number of industries to which it is possible to apply these tags will expand in the coming era when traceability is sought for all products.

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Applicable to all industries


Murata Manufacturing is looking for co-creation partners with the aim of realizing the ideal form of a sustainable society by increasing the traceability of products with the use of invisible ID Tags using colloidal crystals. If your company is interested in collaborating with Murata Manufacturing, please feel free to contact us using the contact form.


Voice of the Developers

Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
Material Process Development Dept., Material Technology Center, Technology & Business Development Unit

Yoshimasa Shirai

There is a need to use products for a long time and to reuse materials to build a sustainable society. Moreover, interest is increasing every year in how products are made and how they are handled after being used. To meet these demands, it is important to link information about raw materials, manufacturing, and the usage state to the product itself. We are waiting for partners who would like to think together with us about the ideal form of the society of the future through invisible ID Tags that enable such information to be linked to products.

Masato Sumiyoshi

To implement new technologies in society, cooperation between companies and collaboration between people who empathize with that idea are essential. Let's consider together the possibilities of invisible ID Tags and the new value of colloidal crystals through collaboration.


Murata Manufacturing is looking for research institutions, companies, and other organizations who are in the relentless pursuit of innovation and interested in turning ideas into unique solutions that could quite possibly shape the future of electronics and our global society.

Project Examples for Collaboration

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