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FLEXO Magazine : September 2014
paper and the plastic lm printed inks that were successfully cured on press without any notable distortion. Although there was no measur- able distortion, the TVI and color gamuts di ered from lm to paper. When using conventional UV curing systems, there has been some concern in the industry with the type of substrates that can success- fully be printed. From the data collected, the conventional UV curing system heated the substrate to a high of 108 degrees Fahrenheit, while the LED UV curing system heated the substrate to a maximum of 88.5 degrees Fahrenheit. LED UV curing systems emitted 16.75 percent to 19.07 percent less heat than conventional UV curing systems. For both curing systems, there was no measurable distortion along the x or y axes of both the SF 2.6M WH BOPP TC/S692N lm and 60# Elite/C2500/40# paper used in this experiment. OTHER FACTORS & INFORMATION In order to obtain information about ink pricing, we interviewed Mike Buystedt. He discussed some pricing considerations when comparing conventional UV and LED UV. Conventional UV curing has been on the market longer than LED UV curing and currently has a greater market share. e larger demand of this technology has created a well established supply chain and a steady level of pricing. Because LED UV curing is a relatively new technology and is not as well established as conventional UV curing, the demand is not as high. is current state of the market causes a discrepancy in pricing be- tween LED and conventional UV ink. LED UV ink prices are current- ly 15 percent to 20 percent higher than conventional UV ink because of supply and demand. As LED UV curing systems gain popularity, the price of the ink will decrease. However, the raw materials used to manufacture LED UV inks are more expensive. CONCLUSIONS TVI analysis showed that LED UV delivered the lowest TVI from 2 percent to 100 percent and conventional UV delivered the highest TVI from 2 percent to 100 percent. e results are inconclusive for black ink; however, a er studying TVI results for black, LED UV has a more accurate dot on press once cured, in comparison to conven- tional UV. A er performing the swab test, it was made obvious that the results were not consistent throughout the data collection process. With the testing procedures used, conventional UV proved to be more durable on paper than any other run. ere was no notable di erence in the ink durability of the other samples. More testing should be done to collect further data about the di erence between ink cure durability when using conventional UV and LED UV curing methods. ere were signi cant di erences in heat emission from the two types of curing systems. Overall, the heat emitted from conventional UV curing lamps was greater than the temperatures measured for the LED UV curing lamps. ere was no measurable distortion of the substrates in any of the runs. In addition to the di erences seen in these characteristics, it is also important to note the di erence in ink prices. Although the growth of the LED UV demand may reduce the current ink prices, the current prices of LED UV ink are 15 percent to 20 percent higher than that of conventional UV ink. As the LED UV curing technology grows and develops, there is room for signi cant improvement and cost reduction. With all of these con- siderations in mind, printers can decide which curing system aligns with their current needs. Although there is some capital investment involved in implementing the new LED UV curing technology, there are important bene ts that companies should consider. With capital investments excluded, LED UV curing systems could easily be imple- mented into a company's current system. About the Authors: Natalee Consulo is a graduate of the Graphic Com- munication department at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She concentrated in Graphics for Packaging and earned her minor in packaging through the Industrial Technology department. is past year, Natalee was the production manager at University Graphic Systems, a student run print company on campus. She was also involved with Cal Poly's winning Phoenix Challenge team, Mat Pica Pi (a social club in the department), and was awarded with the Rossini Scholarship this past year. Natalee is excited to begin her career in the packaging industry at RockTenn's Merchandising Displays division this July. Lena Haidar is a recent graduate of the Graphic Communication department at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She concentrated in Graphics for Packaging and also earned a minor in Packaging. While at Cal Poly, Lena was involved in Poly Pack, a club that focuses on educating students about the packaging industry and connecting them with industry professionals. During her time at Cal Poly, she also participated in various packaging projects, including Cal Poly's winning Phoenix Challenge team in 2014. In the 2012-2013 school year, she was the sheetfed manager at University Graphic Sys- tems, a student run commercial printing and digital imaging company on Cal Poly's campus. She was a recipient of the Rossini Scholarship, which supported the research and ndings highlighted in this project. Lena is excited to begin her career with RR Donnelley in Torrance, CA. Mark MacManus grew up in the sunny beach town of Carlsbad, CA, just north of San Diego. As a child he had a passion for creativity and followed his love for design through a B.S. in Graphic Communication. During his college career at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, he traveled to Barcelona to become uent in Spanish. In 2013 he nished his B.S. in Graphic Communication and minored in Packaging and Spanish. Mark is looking forward to applying what he learned at Cal Poly at his recently accepted job as the Packaging Devel- opment Lead at Cartamundi USA in San Francisco. 74 FLEXO | SEPTEMBER 2014