Inert gas atmosphere curing gets UV boost

April 2007. GEW (EC) Limited has incorporated nitrogen in its N2 UV lamp head system for inert gas atmosphere curing of inks and coatings and coupled the technology with its new e-Brick electronic power supply. Users of the system will benefit from a 30% reduction in power consumption while obtaining a 20% boost in UV output. The addition of nitrogen also substantially improves the degree of cure and provides a significant increase in processing speed.

Inert gas atmosphere technology is used as a means of eliminating oxygen inhibition within inks or coatings thus allowing a reduction of chemistry related photoinitiators. GEW has developed its inert system based on a sealed curing chamber built around a dedicated idler roll. Oxygen is purged from the chamber using nitrogen that is introduced in a controlled manner at the web inlet and within the curing zone. The N2 system is available for printing and converting lines in arc length up to 1500 mm (60”) to maintain oxygen levels between 20 to 2000 ppm. Fully automatic gas level measurement and control minimizes nitrogen consumption giving lower operating costs.

Comments Malcolm Rae, Managing Director, “We supplied our first inert gas atmosphere UV curing system over seven years ago so the technology is not new to us. We have continued to refine the N2 product and over the last few years we have supplied a number of systems for applications that include silicone release coatings, and varnishing of thermal activated substrates for labels and food packaging. The inert system addresses the increasing use of UV inks and coating chemistry for food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical applications. Combining the e-Brick technology with the inert curing chamber is a further refinement to this product that not only brings energy savings and increased efficiency to our customers, but also benefits the environment by reducing electrical consumption.”

GEW (EC) Limited
Tel. + 44 (0) 1737 824500
Fax + 44 (0) 1737 823822