Announcing our new environmentally friendly label printing technology: UV LED ink curing process
We’re passionate about printing, and we get excited about new innovations. We’re particularly excited to announce our new UV LED ink curing process, because it offers you (our customer) three distinct advantages:
- Improved durability
- An environmentally friendly label printing process
- Faster delivery schedules
What is UV LED ink curing? Here’s a primer on the basic principles …
Long ago, the printing industry discovered that UV irradiation sped up the ink-curing process. Even though UV curing had its advantages over traditional solvent inks, it was far from perfect. UV ink curing had many variables that often impacted the quality and stability of the printed project. Unfortunately, the process used mercury-vapor UV bulbs, which required significant power, generated ozone, and generated heat, which increased utility costs due to the need to cool the room.
Our new UV LED ink curing process includes 3 components: specially formulated inks, a compatible printing system, and UV LED ink curing lamps. This advanced technology offers efficiency and other production-related benefits for us. But what does it offer YOU?
Here’s how our new UV LED ink curing technology impacts you:
Improved durability – According to our production manager, Mark Smith, our new UV LED process cures inks instantaneously and thoroughly. This means ink won’t delaminate from your plastic label, graphic overlay, nameplate, faceplate, or membrane switch. An industry article lends a bit more insight: “UV light is better able to penetrate and crosslink the emulsion. During exposure, we are curing the front, middle, and back of the coating simultaneously, as a result of the deeper light penetration.” (This article is titled “LED Exposure: The New Standard” by Jake Franks.)
In addition to improved durability, our new process offers:
- Better printing quality with more vivid colors and crisp, fine details.
- No damage to temperature-sensitive plastic materials. This helps to achieve more exact registration of all ink colors, since the plastic will not heat up and become distorted. Mark notes, “When it comes to printing on plastic, the less heat the better!”
Environmentally friendly – Our new leading-edge technology saves energy and eliminates the use of mercury-vapor UV bulbs, which generate ozone and take time to heat up to the required temperature. Of course, these environmental benefits directly enhance worker safety. In addition, LEDs have a longer lifetime and have lower operating temperatures, making them significantly more energy efficient. “With this new process, there are no fumes, no solvents, and no exhaust. Plus, we don’t have to wait for the lights to reach curing temperature ranges,” Mark says. “We just flip the switch and we’re ready to roll.”
Faster delivery schedules – Previously, we encountered this common obstacle: projects could not be shipped if the ink was still tacky. Printed sheets would need to be cured multiple times over multiple days until they were thoroughly dry and ready to ship. With our new UV LED ink curing process, inks are thoroughly and instantaneously cured, so projects can ship more quickly.
NFI Corp is the leader in printing on plastics – and the leader in using environmentally friendly label printing processes.
When we invest in state-of-the-art technology like our new UV LED ink curing process, you get a long-lasting, high-quality product. Plus, you know we’re taking steps to reduce energy use and seek out additional environmental benefits.
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