You may have heard about inkjet printing a thousand times, but do you know what it really means? Inkjet printers, or Inkjet, are those that – as their name suggests – inject ink droplets onto any material with great precision. The high definition of the image, the adhesion of the ink, the customization of products and, in short, the final quality make inkjet printing a safe bet for the packaging industry.
Inkjet technology prints directly on surfaces, whether porous or non-porous. Since no contact is needed between the print head and the substrate, this technology allows printing without damaging the product or the contents of the package. In addition, as it is a fully digitized process, it facilitates the creation of unlimited designs – adapting the aesthetics and colors that each client needs – and allows errors to be corrected quickly. This, added to the exclusive use of ink and the efficiency of the prints, makes it possible to reduce costs and stock of consumables such as pre-printed labels, white labels and ribbon.
There are different types of inkjet printing. If we are not very knowledgeable about industrial printing systems, the different acronyms and names can overwhelm us and lead to confusion, but everything is easier than it seems. Let’s talk about 3 of the most common inkjet technologies: CIJ, TIJ and High Resolution.
APLINK high resolution printers print directly on any type of porous or non-porous surface; texts, images,
graphics and scannable barcodes, according to International GS1 regulations.
The CIJ (Continuous Inkjet) printing system works with continuous ink jet. What does this mean? That a continuously recirculating ink flow carries the ink to the head and to the surface to be printed. It is a very versatile marking system capable of working at high speed and with a high quality final result. However, the use of solvent inks and the hydraulics themselves make this technology the one that requires the most maintenance.
On the other hand, TIJ (Thermal Inkjet) printers are based on a thermal inkjet process. That is, a system of resistors heats the ink until it momentarily reaches the boiling point and the micro-air bubbles generated in this process expel the ink to the surface to be printed. This technology is also known as ”Bubble Jet”. When the droplets have already been expelled, the temperature drops rapidly so that the head can be filled with ink again and the cycle can be started again. All this, although it may seem like a long and complex process, occurs in a tiny fraction of a second. Therefore, its great advantage is efficiency – in short, less costs – and its easy maintenance.
Finally, High-resolution inkjet systems use piezoelectric heads that, using electrical impulses, inject droplets so tiny that the images that are printed are of absolute quality. This is the case of the APLINK range of printers from United Barcode Systems, which brings the ink to the head without the use of pumps and prints through state-of-the-art piezoelectric heads.
As manufacturers of high-resolution inkjet printers, label printing and application equipment, Thermal Inkjet systems, consumables and software, United Barcode Systems knows the demands of the market and what each customer really needs. Therefore, this 2022 it has expanded its range of APLINK printers to take coding to the next level. The range includes the LCX, MRX and HRX models, the company’s latest major release.
These equipment are based on the printer-consumable binomial, so UBS has its own oil-based and UV-based inks and UVLED curing systems. These curing systems transform the ink from a liquid to a solid state thanks to photoinitiators, which react to ultraviolet light. To make it easy: the drop that has been injected on the surface, when it passes in front of the UV lamp, polymerizes (dries) and stays fixed in position, which allows printing on any surface, whether porous or non-porous.
United Barcode Systems manufactures the only complete and comprehensive UVLED curing solution: Lamp + Printer + Ink.
The APLINK LCX model, the most economical in the range, is specifically designed for coding in secondary packaging. Any production line that requires speeds of up to 50 m/min can find in the APLINK LCX printer your ally to print any logo, text, barcode, date, counter, etc.
The APLINK MRX printers, the best known of UBS, work with its innovative temperature management technology, which ensures minimum consumption and stable printing. The equipment, capable of printing messages up to 72 mm high at speeds of 110 m/min, offers 100% legible results and compatible with GS1 standards (GTIN13, GTIN14, GS1-128, GS1 Datamatrix, etc.)
UBS’s High-resolution Grayscale Inkjet printers are designed to improve coding performance on porous and non-porous surfaces.
The great novelty of UBS this 2022 has been the launch of the APLINK HRX, a new high-resolution printer model with Greyscale technology, a system that allows highlighting the desired elements in the printed message. This system called CPE (Contrast per Element), allows barcodes to stand out from other printed elements, so that different degrees of reading are achieved.
With all this information, there is no doubt that inkjet printing is the best tool for saving and reducing costs on the production line. UBS’ passion for technology, quality and excellence makes them the right choice if you are looking to optimize your labeling, coding or marking.