• Very low energy costs to power LED-UV; a savings up to 50% in power consumption and energy costs versus conventional UV dryers.
• No heat on the printed sheet thus eliminating distortion of plastic substrates.
• No spray powders or other chemicals.
• Yields more than 15 times the lifespan of conventional lamps.
Flexibility to easily move LED-UV lamps interchangeably on press depending on job printing applications.
• Inks can be cured at up to 340% total coverage at standard densities.
• All stock types can be utilized including gloss and matte coated papers, uncoated offset papers, paperboard for packaging, non-porous synthetic papers, foil-laminated sheets, and plastics such as lenticular as well as most plastic packaging, card and label stocks.
• Environmental and safety benefits: UV, HUV, HR-UV or LE UV all rely on mercury lamps; LED eliminates the risk of mercury or ozone contamination and is 100% compliant with future bans on mercury for human safety.
“We are at the forefront in this rapidly-accelerating transition to LED UV drying as this new technology gains fast acceptance,” said Chris Travis, KBA director of technology. “KBA is the only large-format press manufacturer that can offer LED hybrid presses using both traditional UV and LED-UV processes. We are also the only large-format press manufacture that produces its own dryer; this means the KBA VariDry system is fully intergrated into the press allowing for easy operation no matter if it is infrared, hot air, traditional UV, HR UV or LED-UV.
“KBA has been supplying traditional UV long perfecting presses for a number of years and, with the introduction to LED-UV, the process is a perfect fit for perfecting configurations,” Travis added. “Over the last year ink development has increased and we are now seeing a number of suppliers offering LED UV inks. We continue to test and help to develop new products at our headquarters in Germany to provide valuble feedback and recommendations for our customers.”
At Drupa 2012, KBA demonstrated LED-UV drying on a Rapida 106 41-inch press – the first and only press manufacturer to do so. Today, KBA can offer LED-UV presses on all formats with or without traditional UV capability. KBA also offers traditional UV presses that are LED-UV-ready. The KBA VariLED LED-UV system is fully integrated into the press and can be actuated according to the print format. In the future, when running a short sheet the light-emitting diodes will turn off outside of the sheet.
“We see the immediate future of energy curable presses to be a combination of LED-UV and traditional UV,” Travis concluded.