004SWP / light 001
A form of expression that is not possible with conventional paper

Photography: Yasutomo Ebisu


For a long time, humans have created many different works from paper by drawing on it, folding it, making it translucent and using other techniques.
SWP™ has opened the way for adding a new expression known as embossing, which produces transparency and shapes.
With its draping texture similar to cloth, it becomes transparent when heated, allowing light to pass through. Experience a new expression of shapes and light that takes advantage of the feel that is unique to SWP paper.


SWP™ (Polyolefin Synthetic Pulp)

SWP™, which stands for Synthetic Wood Pulp, is the world’s only synthetic pulp created using Mitsui Chemicals’ unique technology. Like natural pulp, it has a form that branches out in a micrometric size.
When it is added to natural pulp or other material in the paper milling process, it adds special functions to the paper.
Including a high level of whiteness that cannot be achieved by dyeing, thermally induced change into transparency, thermal sealing and an embossed texture for 3D expression, the design features allow material blended with SWP™ to be used for fashion catalogues, wrapping containers, business cards, greeting cards, book covers, lamp shades and more.
Its thermal sealing function has led to its use in making tea bags without metal staples.
They enable a metal contamination test to be undertaken, thereby enhancing safety and reassurance. In addition, they are more useful, as the lack of metal materials means that they can be microwaved. SWP™ will be rooting for your life.

<Horizons of Material>

  • ● Paper blended with SWP™ has very high whiteness, and is easily embossable and thermally sealable. Since only the heated portion becomes transparent, it has greater design potential than ordinary paper products.
  • ● Highly regarded for its potential for 3D expression through deep embossing, it has been adopted for a braille picture book in France.
  • ● Taking advantage of this technology, the project attempted to express the deeply embossed form and a draping look with the use of a poster-sized sheet of SWP paper.
  • ● The value based on the combination of the form that capitalizes on the characteristics of the SWP paper with the design of light will expand the horizons towards creating new products.
Photography: Cosmotech Y.K.


A Light Tag made of SWP™ on display at Salone del Mobile Milano

Mitsui Chemicals provided assistance with several materials to the Graduate School of System Design and Management at Keio University (hereinafter "Keio SDM") at the Salone del Mobile Milano exhibition in April 2017. Taking advantage of the characteristic of SWP™ that makes heated areas transparent, it created a pure white tag that explains the installation through gentle light. This light tag demonstrated to visitors the installation based on the latest technology that allowed them to experience Design Beyond Awareness, which was Keio SDM's theme of the exhibition, meaning the integration of humanity with the optimal solution suggested by artificial intelligence.

Creative Partner

Eriko Kawakami / Art director, DRAFT

Eriko Kawakami is an art director who was born in Tokyo in 1982. She graduated from the Department of Design in the Faculty of Fine Arts of Tokyo University of the Arts and joined DRAFT in 2008. Her major works include san grams for Marumatsu Seichajo and creatives for the Potchiri purse store and Aoyama Flower Market. She won a JAGDA award in 2013 and an ADC award in 2015.