Phoseon Releases Two New Products

UV LED Curing Technology

The company debuted the FirePower™ FP601 and FireJet™ FJ601.

Phoseon released two new products – the FirePower™ FP601 and FireJet™ FJ601 – the company said will further advance the use of UV-LED curing for narrow-web applications.

Per Phoseon: The FirePower™ FP601 is a water-cooled solution with advanced control features using a Modbus interface and a high intensity output for the fastest possible cure speeds. The FireJet™ FJ601 simplifies retrofits with a self-contained air-cooled design that eliminates the need for air-extraction systems or water-cooling systems.

Phoseon said its technology uses UV LED light to rapidly set, or “cure,” ink used in printing, resulting in a higher quality product without the use of solvent-based inks.

Flexography utilizes a flexible relief plate – a modern version of letterpress – to print on nearly any type of material, from paper to plastic to metallic film. Unlike solvent or water based flexographic inks, UV inks dry almost instantly when exposed to UV light, resulting in a sharp and colorful image.

With a UV-LED solution, Phoseon said it is enabling converters to enjoy the benefits of UV curing without the typical costs and hazards of operating an arc lamp to produce the UV light.

“UV-LED flexography uses raw chemistry that flows like a liquid. When the UV LED cures that liquid, it forms a long, continuous bond. What you apply to the surface is what you end up with; there is no deterioration, bleeding or fading.”

Sara Jennings, Senior Technical Marketing Engineer, Phoseon Technology

Narrow-web printing — a term primarily pertaining to a printing width under 30 inches — is often used for printing labels, plastic bags and flexible packaging. In addition to higher quality, UV LED curing for flexographic printing allows for better process control, less waste and the ability to run presses faster than with traditional narrow-web printing methods.

“UV-LED flexography uses raw chemistry that flows like a liquid. When the UV LED cures that liquid, it forms a long, continuous bond,” said Sara Jennings, senior technical marketing engineer dedicated to flexographic and narrow web applications at Phoseon Technology. “What you apply to the surface is what you end up with; there is no deterioration, bleeding or fading.”

Narrow-web printing applies ink in layers by color, which, when using solvent- or water-based inks, requires slow and precise drying times to get sharp images; any variation results in blurring or “bleeding” of the color that blurs the image or print. Creating a consistently sharp image is challenging on a porous material like paper, but it is compounded when printing on a nonporous surface like poly plastic. Traditional UV inks provide consistent color, but due to the extreme heat of the arc lamps, it limits the types of materials that can be used.

UV LED flexography excels in areas that are in high demand today, from printing on plastic yogurt containers to labels found on numerous consumer items, such as bottled water to snack bags. In addition to its quick-drying capabilities, UV LED curing creates little heat to transfer to, and potentially damage, the printing surface. 

In addition to standard label and shrink-film jobs, the stable, consistent output of the UV LED system enables converters to confidently run food- and medical-safe processes using LED low-migration inks.

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