Printing Technology

Technical and scientific principles, together with process and component development for the solvent-free rotogravure printing of packaging

The suitability of UV-curable, vinyl ether-based printing inks for the rotogravure printing of packaging has been demonstrated in the course of comprehensive laboratory tests. Given the absence of solvent vapours, this technology is particularly suitable for the food industry. A printing machine which has been adapted for this purpose is available in prototype form.

Summary

As in the paint industry, emissions from inks used in the printing industry pose both environmental protection and work safety problems.  For the printing of packaging, the protection of goods to be packaged (e.g. foodstuffs) must also be considered.

In the course of an overall research project it was therefore intended that solvent-free printing inks should be formulated and tested, and that prototype technical components for the UV rotogravure printing process should be developed.

The object of this subproject was the establishment of principles for the development of the printing process and printing inks.  To this end, comprehensive tests using various ink systems have been conducted in the laboratory, while the requisite technical printing components have either been modified or newly-developed at the same time.

Results:

  • Vinyl ethers can be used as a reactive thinner for UV-curable, solvent-free printing inks.  By this method, reactive printing inks of low viscosity can be produced which, after UV curing, contain virtually no substances which are susceptible to migration, and are therefore suitable for the rotogravure printing of packaging.
  • A test certificate has been issued for the new printing inks developed, confirming that they have no harmful physiological properties when used for the printing of packaging which is to be in indirect contact with foodstuffs.
  • An experimental two-colour rotogravure printing machine has been constructed for the application of the printing inks developed, using material web speeds of up to 120 m/min.

Project Participants

Implementing Institution

Institut für Oberflächenmodifizierung e. V. (IOM)

Cooperation partner

Flint Group Germany GmbH

More Project Informations

Project title:  Technical and scientific principles, together with process and component development for the solvent-free rotogravure printing of packaging

Project number:  01RK9909/9

Project period:  1999 - 2002

Project region:  Germany (Saxony)

Project contact:

Frau Prager

+49 (0)341 235 - 2587

View Publication

Source: German National Library of Science and Technology Hannover (TIB)