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EB Ink Solutions

Published time: 2017-03-03 16:41

Siegwerk promotes an innovative ink solution for offset printing and subsequent electron beam (EB) curing. The new technology delivers outstanding print quality and enables the reduction of operational costs for short runs.

Siegwerk, one of the leading global providers of printing inks for packaging applications and labels, is now offering a new ink range for offset printing, which is particularly suitable for flexible packaging. With these state-of-the-art energy curing offset ink solutions (e.g. EB 705) Siegwerk gives flexible packaging printers access to the benefits of offset printing for short print job lengths: Low cost of print form and short set-up times allowing for quicker changeovers between the print jobs.

Short time-to-market, outstanding print quality and high fastness properties - offset printing inks already do a great job in a wide range of print applications like shrink-film, wrap-around and inmould labels. Up to now, UV curing inks are successfully used in many cases. Converters who want to avoid the use of photo initiators in energy curing inks can alternatively use electron beam (EB) curing systems to reduce the risk of potential migration problems.

Several industrial print trials on Comexi's central impression EB offset press, called CI8, have shown, Siegwerk's new EB technology offers an excellent print performance, low dot gain, low water dosing with less emulsification and scumming as well as fast intensity recovery after stops. The new ink technology is suitable for a variety of plastic substrates of the flexible packaging market like coex. OPP, acrylic coated PET, etc. Recently, first positive results were obtained in lamination studies with different packaging structures too.

In many market segments there is a trend towards shorter print job lengths driven by brand owners desiring packaging diversification and also an optimization of working capital along the value chain. Due to this, printers have to deal with frequent changes in the printed design and a varying average job lengths. "In the past, typical print run lengths for example in beverage wrap-around labels were several tens of thousands of square meters," explained Stefan Busse, regional director application technology, Flexible Packaging EMEA at Siegwerk. "Today, more and more jobs are printed on wide web machines with only a few thousand square meters. In order to stay cost-competitive in these markets all cost drivers have to be minimized. That's why some of our customers are attracted by the low cost of print forms for offset printing plates."

Due to the excellent print performance of the new EB ink solutions Siegwerk has recently been invited to supply EB offset inks for Comexi's last Open House event on December 14th in Girona (Spain) where the company was presenting its new CI8 press to a selected audience. "We are proud of the acknowledgement of our ink performance by Comexi," said Busse. "During the last month our technical teams in Europe have made any effort in finding ways to help our customers accessing the benefits of offset printing in flexible packaging."

The new ink technology was developed in accordance with the relevant product safety standards. All ingredients are compliant with the stringent Swiss Ordinance and will also comply with the upcoming new German Ordinance. Own migration tests with trial materials exhibited low migration behavior suitable for food packaging. The new system will add to Siegwerk's broad range of Flexible Packaging solutions - while other ink technologies including UV inks will continue to have their merits.

Siegwerk is continuously focusing on the expansion of its offering for the packaging market and to strengthen its market leadership in labels and flexible packaging applications. With a combination of best-in-class ink performance, high product safety, and continuous support and guidance, Siegwerk will make any effort to support customers in addressing upcoming trends and meet their individual needs with cutting-edge solutions.