Olec’s modular Coat Master Series UV Roller Coaters produce high-quality UV gloss, matte, and satin finishes on a variety of printed stocks including screen, digital, and thin stock. Within its Gen II series UV curing system, sensors are placed before and after the UV tunnel for sheet-jam detection. The UV lamp automatically powers off if a sheet enters yet is not detected exiting the UV curing tunnel. A state-of-the-art cooling system uses a heavy-duty blower to blow fresh air onto the lamp reflector housing. Hot air is then carried to the exhaust system, where it is released.
This past June, Kompac released the latest in its EZ Koat line: the EZ Koat 15. It is a small-footprint, high-powered UV and aqueous coater capable of coating a sheet size of 14.5 inches wide by virtually any length. EZ Koat is the only UV coating system to feature solid state UV, which replaces outdated and potentially hazardous ballast/mercury relay systems. Kompac’s patent-pending, rotating UV reflector technology prevents over-curing when the coating process is interrupted. And its proprietary Vac facilitates coating changes and clean up in under five minutes.
EZ Koat 15 is designed for both digital and offset output, which does not surprise Steve Metcalf, president/CEO of Air Motion Systems (AMS), a leading manufacturer of high-performance conventional UV and UV
LED curing systems technology. “There’s so much cross-over now” between the conventional offset, flexo, and digital print processes, “from chemistry lessons to light-curing techniques,” he said. AMS is a founding and producing sponsor of the Print UV Conference (see box).
Despite Kodak’s financial troubles, its NexPress continues to raise eyebrows with dimensional printing effects from its Fifth Imaging Unit Solution option. One of the most recent installations of the NexPress SX3300 Digital Production Color Platform, announced last December, is at commercial printer Image World in the Philippines. The SX Platform can print on more than 700 standard offset substrates, including coated, uncoated, FSC, plastics, magnets, linens, static clings, and microperforated substrates.
The Fifth Imaging Unit Solution was the defining factor in Image World’s purchase, according to Robert Sy, PhD and the firm’s chairman. “The most striking feature of the NexPress SX3300 Press is the Fifth Imaging Unit Solution, which can do at least six special tasks,” Sy explained. “The dimensional raised printing that actually makes the desired section of the image palpable and gives depth to the printed material; the watermarking that can be employed to make it look like the design of the paper; the glossing, whether full or spot, that stands out very clearly and definitely shines better than lamination; the MICR that has all the capabilities to print bank checks; red fluorescing ink that can print security and barcodes visible only under UV light; and the RGB that enhances colors and makes the brand color of each company possible.”
Dr. Sy foresees the potential for bringing new value-added products – such as photo books with dimensional effects and school diplomas with red fluorescing ink for added security – to his company’s repertoire. Unique in the industry for inline digital cut-sheet presses, dimensional printing is achieved by adding Kodak Dimensional Clear Dry Ink to the Fifth Imaging Unit of a NexPress. Characteristics previously unattainable with digital printing, such as a 3D tactile photo surface, dimensional, or raised print, and distinctive textures, have been incorporated into the design of NexPress-printed materials for the past four years.
There have been enhancements to high-speed inkjet coating technologies as well. HP, Kodak, and Océ are working with leading coated paper manufacturers to expand the range of coated stock choices for their production class inkjet presses. Last year, Sappi began deploying its new line of papers, including coated, specially designed for the needs of full-color inkjet printing.