Cork Tech Talk Blog

Aqueous Blister Coatings Take Over 

Talk about a market change over! It wasn’t too many years ago that the blister card market was dominated by solvent based blister card coatings. Not only has the blister card market grown by leaps and bounds, but the dominating solvent based blister card coatings have been replaced by aqueous blister coatings. Additionally, what was formerly exclusively an off-line post print, second pass roller coating business has yielded more and more to higher productivity, inline, print/one bump coat production. Litho printers have for some time eyed the blister packaging market wanting to participate totally, and now they are. 

Read more: Aqueous Blister Coatings Printed In-line

Why Prop 65? 

In California, Prop 65 requires the state to publish a list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or reproductive harm. The law requires a warning label on anything containing these. Benzophenone was listed in 2012. Benzophenone (BP) or Benzo, has been generally recognized as the most used Photoinitiator (PI) globally. It is known for its effectiveness as an initiator, and its relative low cost. UV printing ink and coating manufacturers have responded by replacing low molecular weight, high migration potential PIs. As a result, benzophenone & ITX free formulations have been made available, notably for food packaging. In other moves, raw material suppliers continue to develop self-curing resin solutions, new large molecule, low migration, low odor polymeric photoinitiators (PPIs), and co initiators. Significantly, these changes have become price drivers for UV curing products. 

Read more: California Prop 65 UV Coatings

Flexo Style Chambered Doctor Blade Metering Coaters 

Flexo style chambered doctor blade metering coaters have become the dominant coater type used on sheet fed offset presses. They have proved capable of producing high levels of precise, repeatable application of clear coatings, and other fluid products. Integral to this success has been the development of the laser engraved ceramic anilox roll, which is durable and does not wear over time. This means that the cells engraved into the ceramic to carry a pre-determined volume of liquid are consistently the same. 

Read more: Coatings & Anilox Transfer Efficiency To The Substrate

Chemicals Found in Fast Food Packaging 

A number of news outlets have recently reported, referred to, and quoted the findings of a study conducted in 2014-15 by Silent Spring Institute. The study was published in the journal, “Environmental Science & Technology Letters.” It reported on the finding of chemical substances (fluorinated compounds), that have been linked with health problems and cancer, in some fast food packaging.

Read more: Media Reports Fluorinated Compounds in U.S. Fast Food Packaging

About Soft Touch Coatings 

Soft Touch coatings are able to provide products with a unique soft, warmer, more comfortable, luxurious, feel that humans intrinsically desire. The tactile, haptic effect provided is able to enhance the sensory perceptions of the consumer. Soft Touch coatings unquestionably add value to products as they impart appealing visual and tactile properties, setting products apart in the marketplace. It’s been long known that humans have an affinity for soft things. Because of this there is an ongoing global marketing trend to offer Soft Touch coatings to satisfy consumers and alter buying trends. Soft Touch coatings are being applied across a wide range of consumer product applications including automotive interiors, appliances, and consumer electronics, packaging, and labeling products. The result is the creation of a soft feel on ordinary paper, plastic, and metal substrates that is appealing to consumers, and adding value. 

Read more: Soft Touch Coatings Raise the Bar

Aqueous coatings are complex blends that may have foaming issues.  Here are some ways to control foaming. Aqueous coatings are complex blends with the typical formula consisting of styrene/acrylic co-polymers, amines, water, plasticizer, waxes, surfactant, and an anti-foamer. The balance of each material portion to the total is important and enables a given target performance result to be achieved. 

Read more: Aqueous Coatings & Foaming

Dry Erase & Chalk Board UV Coatings

Specialty UV coatings give printers and brand managers alike the opportunity to create a product marketing advantage. Today, UV coatings that provide a smooth matte finish on a printed substrate are available from Cork Industries to create both whiteboard & chalkboard surfaces on a variety of common printable and coat-able substrates. Everyone should be familiar with dry erase white board and chalk “black” board writing surfaces. Think school, but what about other new creative applications for these UV coatings?

Read more: Dry Erase Whiteboard & Chalkboard UV Coatings

Why use Aqueaous Coatings in Lithography? Productivity!

When a sheetfed offset lithographer is asked, “Why do you use overprint varnishes?” The stock answer is that conventional oleoresinous overprint press varnishes are used to protect conventional litho inks. An expanded answer adds that rub and scuff resistance can be improved and the finish can range from gloss to matte, etc. Somewhat the same answer is given by many when they are asked, “why are aqueous coatings used”? However, the really knowledgeable aqueous coating user answers that, productivity is the main reason to use aqueous solutions!

Read more: Aqueous Coatings Boost Litho Productivity

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About the Author

Elmer W. Griese Jr, having accumulated 35+ years of knowledge working in the coatings and printing ink industries has now authored the Cork Tech Talk News, newsletter since 1992 producing 112 issues. He remains dedicated to educating and illuminating technological progress that offers the potential to advance coating technology and its applications.

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