Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Infrared emitters and UV lamps speed up production and improve quality


The coating of foils, the printing of labels or the gluing of electronic components are very different and demanding applications. They all require innovative production processes to remain nice to look at, durable and scratch-proof. Heraeus Noblelight infrared and UV systems increase production speed and improve the quality of the drying process.

Easy retrofitting at a paper coating line

Heraeus Noblelight develops special drying and curing solutions tailored to the production process to optimise the use of energy, reduce costs and save time. (Picture: Heraeus Noblelight GmbH)

By simply retrofitting a Heraeus Noblelight infrared system,Smith & Mclaurin in Great Britain were able to speed up and improve their production of labels.

Smith & Mclaurin Ltd is a leading manufacturer and global supplier of self-adhesive labels, tags and tickets. Based at Johnstone, Renfrewshire, the company is selling reels of materials to printing houses and processors that manufacture finished labels and tags for a wide range of end users such as supermarkets, pharmacies, logistics companies and food-processing companies.

An important part of the production process is the application of silicone materials to the label strips. Provided with an adhesive, the silicone is attached to the rear of the label strips and then dried and cured. Previously, this was done using a 20 years-old combined system of infrared and hot-air oven. However, increased demand required a higher speed of the production line and the existing infrared oven was unable to manage this.

Smith & Mclaurin had already successfully been operating a carbon infrared system (CIR) at another line and so the engineers contacted Heraeus and retrofitted a 192 kW CIR oven directly downstream of the existing hot-air oven. The CIR system comprises two modules with 96 kW each, which were installed above the line, each module being equipped with 15 medium-wave carbon emitters arranged in 10 individually controllable zones. This allows the output to be increased from 0 kW to 192 kW in ten equal steps to meet the specific requirements of the production process.

“The success of this second infrared installation further increases our confidence in the technology,” comments Iain McCourty, Engineering manager at the Renfrewshire site. “The ability of the Carbon medium wave system to provide heat instantaneously and uniformly through the applied coatings has ensured that we can now increase line speed. At the same time, the controllability of the system means that we are obtaining a much more reliable, and hence better quality, adhesive cure.”

Efficiently cross-linked with optimal use of energy

In order that coatings, paints or inks remain nice to look at, durable and scratch-proof, they need to be dried and cured sufficiently and optimally. This requires that wavelengths as well as UV light intensity and dose be adjusted to the photoinitiators of the varnish formulation or the coating.
Heraeus Noblelight offers different UV solutions for the pretreatment or curing of paints, inks and coatings.

The range includes innovative LED technology, special surface lamps (UVC Cure) or conventional UV medium-pressure lamp systems as well as microwave-powered UV lamp systems. Based on curing process, material, coating and ink or lacquer formulation, the UV solutions are tailored to the individual process requirements.

The different UV systems emit intensive UV light in the wavelength range of 200 to 400 nanometres. The wavelengths of the lamps are optimised for the photoinitiators of the lacquer system or coating to achieve efficient and sufficient cross-linking. This enables higher production speeds and improved process reliability. The processing of the surface can continue without much delay or the surface is scratch-resistant or durable at the end of a curing process.

From start to finish: Heraeus UV light sources accompany the entire production process

Prior to application of the coating or printing, the surface tension can be reduced and the surface energy increased by means of VUV radiation (vacuum UV). Due to the resulting changed wetting properties, materials can be processed further better and faster. After that, the UV coating or printing is cured.

Intensive microwave-powered UV medium-pressure systems with appropriate doping or UV LED systems are used for this. Selection of a suitable UV solution also allows intermediate curing steps. Finally, the surface can be further improved by means of a special UVC cure system. Similar to UV LEDs, the system emits monochromatic UV radiation in the UVC range. This makes surfaces significantly more scratch-resistant.

Heraeus UV solutions can be used depending on which process step is to be optimised. The use of advanced UV LED technology is a promising option to lower the energy consumption and heat generation. UV LEDs are ozone-free and long-lasting. This makes maintenance easy and saves money. The current developments of UV LED coatings and lacquers enable curing with UV LEDs despite the monochromatic spectrum. Conventional UV technologies such as UV medium-pressure lamp systems dry and cure paints across a wide, polychromatic spectrum with a very high intensity. This allows high speeds and reliable curing processes. The cured paints or inks give the surfaces a brilliant appearance.

All UV and IR systems can be used separately or in combination to tailor the drying and curing solution to your requirements. Application experts give advice as to how drying and curing processes can be optimised and energy can be saved by the purposeful use of UV and IR radiation – for premium, scratch-resistant and durable surfaces.

Heraeus, the technology group headquartered in Hanau, Germany, is a leading international family-owned company formed in 1851. We create high-value solutions for our customers, strengthening their competitiveness for the long term. Our activities focus on a number of markets: chemical and metals, energy and the environment, communications and electronics, health, mobility, and industrial applications. In fiscal year 2013, Heraeus achieved product revenue of €3.6 billion and precious metals trading revenue of €13.5 billion. With some 12,500 employees in over 110 subsidiaries worldwide, Heraeus holds a leading position in its global markets.

Heraeus Noblelight GmbH with its headquarters in Hanau and with subsidiaries in the USA, Great Britain, France, China and Australia, is one of the technology- and market-leaders in the production of specialist light sources and systems. In 2013, Heraeus Noblelight had an annual turnover of 138 Million € and employed 875 people worldwide. The organization develops, manufactures and markets infrared and ultraviolet emitters, systems and solutions for applications in industrial manufacture, environmental protection, medicine and cosmetics, research, development and analytical measurement techniques..

For more information, please contact:
Technical: Heraeus Noblelight GmbH
Reinhard-Heraeus-Ring 7
D-63801 Kleinostheim
Tel +49 6181/35-8545, Fax +49 6181/35-16 8545

Press: Dr. Marie-Luise Bopp
Heraeus Noblelight GmbH,
Abteilung Marketing/Werbung
Tel +49 6181/35-8547, Fax +49 6181/35-16 8547

Dr. Marie-Luise Bopp | Heraeus Noblelight GmbH

More articles from Trade Fair News:

nachricht Creating living spaces for people: The »Fraunhofer CityLaboratory« at BAU 2017
14.10.2016 | Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

nachricht Reducing Weight through Laser-assisted Material Processing in Automobile Construction
13.10.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT

All articles from Trade Fair News >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>