DIGITAL PRINTING & UV FLATBED PRINTING
Digital printing describes the process of transferring a document on a personal computer or other digital storage device to a printing substrate by means of a device that accepts text and graphic output. As with other digital processes, information is reduced to binary code, or “digitized,” to facilitate its storage and reproduction. Digital printing has steadily replaced lithography in many markets, especially at the consumer and business level, as a result of its substantially lower production costs.
Digital printing refers to methods of printing from a digital-based image directly to a variety of media.It usually refers to professional printing where small-run jobs from desktop publishing and other digital sources are printed using large-format and/or high-volume laser or inkjet printers. Digital printing has a higher cost per page than more traditional offset printing methods, but this price is usually offset by avoiding the cost of all the technical steps required to make printing plates. It also allows for on-demand printing, short turnaround time, and even a modification of the image (variable data) used for each impression. The savings in labor and the ever-increasing capability of digital presses means that digital printing is reaching the point where it can match or supersede offset printing technology’s ability to produce larger print runs of several thousand sheets at a low price.
UV printing is a form of digital printing that uses ultra-violet lights to dry or cure ink as it is printed. As the printer distributes ink on the surface of a material (called a “substrate”), specially designed UV lights follow close behind, curing – or drying – the ink instantly. Originally developed for quickly drying gel nail polishes during manicures, ultraviolet light applications quickly expanded into industrial and commercial markets. Because the UV lights cure any printed ink immediately, the dots of wet ink do not get a chance to spread out once printed, resulting in much finer detail. In addition, UV cured inks are weather-resistant and offer increased resistance to fading. This curing process is more environmentally friendly as it produces few VOC’s, odor, and heat.
The UV curing process has been in use in the printing industry for more than thirty years. LED curing technology for UV printers is replacing older technology with compelling advantages of better economics, system capabilities, and environmental benefits. UV LED curing technology is rapidly becoming the new standard for UV printing for both full cure and pinning applications. Most ink manufacturers include a UV LED option today, making integration and use of LED even easier.