Drying, Curing & UV Choosing between aUV LED or UV lamp A

s a supplier of both UV LED and UV lamps, IST Metz can offer flexibility and can support users with its expertise.

LED UV technology is making its way into more

and more printing companies. The reasons include efficient drying, brilliant print results, long life and free from the production of ozone. The key difference between highly reactive LED

inks and conventional UV inks are the photoinitiators, which are adapted to wavelengths greater than 350nm, and thus to the emission level of the LED lamps. Other ink components, such as binders or pigments, are largely comparable with those of other UV inks. “The more highly reactive inks do essentially

make it possible to save energy,” says Stefan Feil, director of technical marketing, IST Metz. However, a comparison between a

conventional UV system and an LED system would have to take into account that the LED system also changes the chemistry of the inks. “An effective comparison needs to be made on the basis of a defined drying outcome, which in turn allows the necessary drying output to be deduced. Stand-by and production times, and average print format also need to be taken into account to make the result meaningful,” adds Feil. IST Metz supplies a complete range of LED

products — for sheetfed offset printing, the LUV type of water-cooled high-performance LED system, LEDcure, is applicable. The system series coordinates to suit the

differing requirements of sheet-fed offset presses. An optical system with lenses specially designed to meet the requirements of the application in question results in an optimum light yield on the substrate. The systems are available in different wavelengths, the standard being 385nm. Water- cooling of the LED chips guarantees a high level of efficiency and system durability. A smart modular, basic concept, in

combination with a robust and compact design, provides the user with maximum flexibility and versatility. The length of the system can be scaled

and also adapted to suit all machine formats and installation situations. This allows an LEDcure unit to be used in a variety of positions on a press. XT8 booster technology means the LUV type of LEDcure also has up to a 30 per cent higher output than conventional LED systems. Other highlights of the new LEDcure include straightforward exchange of the optical system and the possibility of upgrading the LED chips further down the track. The individual

benefits of lamp and LED UV lamp systems are used primarily in high-end packaging in the luxury segment, but also for security requirements and for making food packaging. This is a technology that has been established, tried and tested for decades, for which a wide range of inks and varnishes is now available on the market. “It is virtually impossible to make a blanket statement about which technology is suitable for which application,” says Feil. “It is already clear that both technologies

boast application-specific individual advantages, which need to be considered when selecting a UV system. That is why advice and consideration of the requirements of the individual case are essential in order to find the right system.” With the Hot Swap product concept from IST

Metz, the user has the option of switching between the two technologies at any time. IST Metz equips its UV systems in such a way that they can be switched to operate either with UV lamps or UV LEDs. Integration and electrical supply are identical for both systems: the cassette with the light source simply has to be inserted in the printing press. The UV Transfer Centre, at the IST Metz headquarters in Nürtingen, advises both novices and experienced users of UV to help find the right system.


October 2017

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