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FLEXO Magazine : July 2008
TECHNOLOGIES & TECHNIQUES ø z - ø c CJ :: III ..... III - >< III ..... II. - Chart 1. Energy LCI for lamination adhesives. Four-roll solvent less coating head. Typical gravure coating head. Chart 2. Cure rate of some solventless adhesives. Solventless Laminating Adhesives Poised for continued growth By Michael Leib and Larry Jopko I n the 1970s, one of the first major energy crunches occurred, spurring the development of solventless adhesive technology for packaging to replace the commonly used solvent-based adhesives. The same issues exist today: high energy costs, high raw material costs, higher labor costs, environmental concerns and the need to supply finished and safe laminate in ever short- er time. The current state of solventless adhesive development favors all of these issues. While converters are paying more for energy and raw materials, retailers and consumer product goods manufacturers are trying to drive prices down.There are many advantages to using solventless adhesives today, based upon the current economic and reglulatory conditions. RELATIVE COSTS The adhesive is the least costly part of the lamination con- struction, between 1 percent and 5 percent of raw material cost (substrates, inks, coatings) but involves the most costly waste- poor adhesion, or lack of performance in the intended use, and usually results in total scrap of the construction. When the cost of the competing adhesive types, solvent-based, water-based and solventless, are compared, there is a clear advantage for solventless. Relative Cost Normalized to Solventless Adhesives-Average Pricing by class Adhesive Type/Class As Supplied As Applied Solids + diluent (based on solids) and coreactant (If needed) Solventless 1 1 · General Purpose and Medium Performance . High / Special Performance 2.2 2.2 Solvent Base 1.7 - 1.9 1.9 - 2.1 · General Purpose and Medium Performance . High / Special Performance 2.8-3 3.2-3.4 Water Base 1.3 1.5 · General Purpose and Medium Performance FLEXO 2008 www.flexography.org J U LV
Flexo Sustainable Fall 2008