We are increasingly seeing how users within the printing and graphics industry are incorporating UV LED lamp technology in their drying (polymerising) and curing processes.
Mercury arc lamps have traditionally been used for this drying process; however, UV LED technology is currently becoming established as a more efficient technology, in particular from an energy and environmental perspective, and has proven to be an excellent solution for the industry.
Zonten Multiprint semi-rotary offset equipment has UV LED drying, banking on the sustainable transition of the market as well as taking advantage of its many other advantages:
Low energy consumption
A UV LED unit emits approximately 18 to 25 W/cm2 and, what’s more, consumes the liquid cooling of the LEDs and the output control circuit. If we compare with conventional drying lamps, the latter consume a total of approximately 5 KW/lamp for a width of 420 mm. In terms of exposure, the consumption measured in light energy is 20 w / cm2 against 120 w / cm2 of power of the conventional system.
It should also be borne in mind that the UV LED units turn on and off instantly to optimise consumption. In a conventional drying system, the lamps are always on with maintenance voltage and when they are switched off, they must be allowed to cool completely before being used again.
Longer useful life
The useful life of a UV LED unit is approximately 20,000 hours, depending on heat dissipation. For example, if a UV LED drying unit works for 16 hours a day at the estimated minimum useful life (20,000 hours), this UV LED lamp would last 1,250 days, which is roughly 5 years. If we compare with the useful life of a conventional drying lamp, which usually has a useful life of approximately 1,000 -1,500 hours, with the lamp operating 8 hours a day, it will have to be replaced after just 125 days, roughly 6 months after installation.
Does not produce ozone
Due to its composition, this technology does not produce ozone, so no special type of ventilation is required to get rid of it, with the added advantage of no thermal leaks through these ventilation systems.
Adjustable light intensity
The volume of light can be constantly controlled between zero and full power output. You can vary the current or selectively adjust individual LED lamps, so that you always have the correct intensity. With conventional lamps, the electric current must always be kept above a fixed value to maintain the discharge, however the working power is also adjustable.
The material does not overheat
With UV LEDs, the temperature of the chip is water-cooled, so the material (coil) does not heat up. What’s more, by emitting UV light with a peak of 385-395 nm, printers with this technology built-in can handle different materials that would be highly vulnerable to heat if used with conventional drying lamps.
Find out more about our drying systems in the following article.
Contact us and our experts will help you select the most suitable machinery for your projects.