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Balancing Stability & Cure in Cationic UV Jet-inks

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UV free-radical jet-inks are well established as the UV ink chemistry of choice for a variety of industrial printing applications. However, curing is inhibited in air and for high speed applications an inert atmosphere is required. In addition, cured films may exhibit shrinkage and have limited adhesion to media such as plastics and metals; in many cases a coating or surface treatment is needed.

Cationic UV jet-inks have emerged as a new technology that can compete with free-radical in several areas. The curing mechanism is such that it is not affected by the presence of oxygen and can offer satisfactory adhesion, lower shrinkage, to plastics and metals. In contrast to the free-radical case, the inks are very sensitive to the presence of acids and bases. The former help propagate curing while the latter tend to have an inhibiting effect. Therefore, in terms of storage stability and end-use performance, such as speed of cure, it is important to balance the acidity and basicity of the inks. This paper examines some of the factors involved in stabilising cationic UV jet-inks, looking specifically at the role of acids and bases on storage and curing properties.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2006

More about this publication?
  • For more than 25 years, NIP has been the leading forum for discussion of advances and new directions in non-impact and digital printing technologies. A comprehensive, industry-wide conference, this meeting includes all aspects of the hardware, materials, software, images, and applications associated with digital printing systems, including drop-on-demand ink jet, wide format ink jet, desktop and continuous ink jet, toner-based electrophotographic printers, production digital printing systems, and thermal printing systems, as well as the engineering capability, optimization, and science involved in these fields.

    Since 2005, NIP has been held in conjunction with the Digital Fabrication Conference.

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