Most of the processes commonly used in pharmaceutical tubing are offset printing, screen printing and heat embossing.
Common medical tube printing processes are: dust removal – surface pretreatment – printing (UV ink) – glass varnish UV curing. The dedicated tube printer can basically complete the above process.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – dust removal:
A common problem with plastic materials is that they are relatively prone to static electricity. In the process of producing the tube, the raw material is always in frictional contact with the metal mold, which generates static electricity on the surface of the tube, which makes the surface of the tube easy to absorb dust. Therefore, dust removal is required during printing.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – surface pretreatment:
Since polyethylene raw material is a non-polar material, surface pretreatment is required before printing. There are two main methods of treatment, one is corona treatment and the other is flame treatment. Both of these methods will achieve the purpose of firmly bonding the ink and varnish.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – printing:
At present, there are two commonly used printing methods for plastic tubes. One is offset printing. The ink is transferred to the printing plate by a set of ink rollers, and the printing plate transfers the ink on the printed pattern to the blanket. The blanket then transfers the entire printed pattern to the substrate in one pass.
Offset printing plates are usually made from photocurable resin plate materials, which are made through the main exposure, development, cleaning, drying and post-exposure processes. The production time of the printing plate is about 30-40 minutes, and the printing durability can reach more than 100,000.
At present, the speed of offset printing can reach 12,000 per hour, and the operation process becomes easier and simpler. The increased production speed and reduced cost of offset printing has led to the widespread use of offset printing for tubular printing.
Another method of tube printing is traditional screen printing. In recent years, the printing accuracy and printing speed of household screen printing machines have been greatly improved. The production speed can reach 5000 pieces/hour, and the overprinting accuracy can reach ±0.2mm. Because the ink layer of screen printing is thicker, it is mainly used for color. Print a tube or part of an uncovered varnish product.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – coating:
A coating device is installed on the offset press, which consists of two steel rollers and one rubber roller. The adhesion fastness of the varnish is also directly related to the tension of the pretreated plastic surface. Varnishes are usually UV curable varnishes and come in many types such as gloss oil and matte oil. In addition, there are thermosetting varnishes and 3-in-1 varnishes for varnishing after offset printing.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – varnish curing:
For UV curing varnishes, the degree of curing of the varnish has a great relationship with the wavelength and intensity of ultraviolet light emitted by the UV lamp. For products that undergo subsequent processing (such as hot stamping), the degree of curing of the varnish will have a significant impact on the quality of subsequent processing.
Pharmaceutical tube manufacturing process – hot embossing:
Emboss a thin layer of heat embossing paper over it so the silkscreen doesn’t feel uneven. The hot stamping process is mainly divided into several parts: preparation work before hot stamping, hot stamping plate, plate installation, determination of hot stamping process parameters, hot stamping test and formal hot stamping.
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Post time: Jan-09-2023