The dilemma between EB ink and UV ink

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EB ink against UV ink: Dilemma

as we all know, EB and UV ink have some advantages. Compared with general inks, the main advantage of energy curing inks is that they do not pollute the environment. UV or EB curing inks and coatings have a solid content of 100%, so the ingredients do not contain VOC (organic volatile matter) harmful to human body and the environment

in addition, the printed matter printed with UV and EB inks has a beautiful appearance, and the printing crystal has excellent resistance to various kinds of resistance. UV and EB inks add gloss and three-dimensional sense to the printed matter, truly making the UV or EB ink printed matter stand out. Compared with ordinary inks, energy curing inks can complete drying and fixation in an instant, making online operations of printing, coating, polishing and compounding possible

uv and EB ink printing can also reduce the cleaning time of the printing machine, because even if the UV and EB ink on the ink bucket or the printing machine is stored for one night, there will be no crusting and hardening, so the waste of ink is reduced

once the printing factory decides to use energy curing ink for printing, weighing the advantages and disadvantages of EB ink and UV ink will be put on the agenda. In terms of cost, the price of EB ink is very close to that of UV ink. Expensive photoinitiators (photosensitizers) are not required in the formulation of EB ink, but some expensive raw materials are combined in the formulation of EB ink to give printed matter exquisite printing effect and good resistance in special applications

Mike McGowan, sales and marketing director of energy curing ink of Sun Chemical ink company, said: "The biggest difference between UV ink and EB ink in terms of function should be their different applications in food packaging printing. In food packaging printing, EB ink has uniform and stable printing effect, good repeatability, and there is no photoinitiator in the ink composition. Therefore, the printing smell of EB ink is less, and the migration of components in the ink is less."

although the initial cost of EB ink is slightly higher than that of UV ink, the function of EB ink is more powerful. Sometimes the printed matter may need to be covered with three layers of thin ethylene, but the downstream derivative manufacturers cannot take the opportunity to raise the price of the film to its surface because of the excess capacity of the end product, so that the printed matter can be dried and fixed on both sides in an instant. With EB ink printing, the printing speed can be as high as 3000 feet/minute. The energy consumption of current EB curing equipment shows a downward trend, making EB ink printing more efficient

Jonathan, the director of UV/EB technical services of INX international ink company, believes that the advantage of EB ink is that the curing degree is sufficient, especially the curing of thick ink film is relatively complete, the smell is small, and there will be no strong heat that will lead to the deformation and distortion of the substrate during the curing. The disadvantage is that the capital investment is large, the operation cost is high, and the floor space of EB curing device and nitrogen container is limited

the raw material cost of manufacturing EB ink is usually cheaper than UV ink

Jonathan said, "it is generally believed that EB inks do not need photoinitiators (photosensitizers) Therefore, the raw material cost of EB ink is cheaper than that of UV ink. However, when we measure the overall cost of EB ink, we must also consider another factor that affects the cost cutting minutes to ensure the stable placement of its equipment. Because the purity of EB ink raw materials is very high, low odor EB ink can be obtained, so the price of highly purified raw materials is higher. At the same time, the purity analysis of raw materials and finished ink by the analysis laboratory is also one of the cost factors to be considered. At the same time, the operation and maintenance of EB curing equipment also requires a lot of research and development costs. The testing of ink products also requires a certain cost. "

nevertheless, EB ink and UV ink have their own characteristics, so it is difficult to choose between them

Jonathan continued, "it is not easy to compare EB ink and UV ink, because they have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. They should really be treated as completely different processes."

Rodney Ballmer, technical director of flint, said: "Direct comparison between EB ink and UV ink is not easy. Basically, the current EB ink printing process is limited to the rotary printing machine, and may change in the future. The curing of EB curing materials must be in inert air, so nitrogen is required during curing. Nitrogen can be prepared on site or stored nitrogen. Although the price of EB curing system is declining, the cost of EB curing system may be higher than The renovation cost of installing UV lamps between the units of the rotary printing machine is lower. "

Ballmer continued: "on the other hand, EB ink has some obvious advantages over UV ink: it does not release ozone, does not need heat source for cold curing, curing is not affected by ink color, curing depth is more thorough, and there is no photoinitiator, so the odor is small."

finally, we should talk about the value of EB ink and UV ink from the perspective of printing manufacturers and printing customers

Kent Sha, vice president of technology at colorconvertingindustries, said: "Every printing company has different regulations on the bottom line of print performance and overall printing cost. Compared with UV curing ink printing, the product quality of EB ink printing is more stable, and the curing degree of different printing parts is more predictable. Compared with UV ink, the curing degree of EB ink is more uniform and stable, independent of ink color and ink film thickness. Because EB ink does not need photoinitiator, EB oil is a biodegradable environmental friendly plastic bag Ink prints have little or no smell. The structure of UV curing lamp is complex, and maintenance is also very important, so the maintenance of UV curing lamp is more difficult. "

Kent Shah finally said: "On the other hand, due to the high cost of EB curing equipment, many printing companies often make the purchase decision until the end. If printing companies use EB ink to print plastic films, printers will worry that EB ink will degrade the plastic films and eventually affect the integrity of the plastic films. In addition, like UV ink, EB curing equipment is not suitable to be installed between the units of multi-color printing machines. If such a strategy is adopted Then the equipment cost is very expensive. Some printing plants install UV curing units between units, and install EB curing units at the end of the printing machine to cure the printed matter. "

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