Clearing Confusion When Comparing UV LED Curing Systems

Understanding equipment specifications and how to properly measure output can help narrow web printers make better decisions.

Due to a lack of UV equipment specification standards and the need for different radiometry measurement devices, label and flexible packaging producers may be confused when comparing different UV LED curing systems. Understanding the UV LED equipment specifications and how to properly measure UV LED output can help flexographic and narrow web end users make legitimate comparisons and better decisions when choosing a UV LED curing system.

End users often compare UV LED curing systems based on electrical power input, radiant power output, and the efficiency calculated from them. However, what is useful for an optimal industrial process, such as the UV curing of label and flexible packaging inks, overprint varnishes or laminating adhesives, is information and comparison values about the intensity, homogeneity, and distribution of the UV radiation onto the substrate. Unfortunately, UV LED equipment specifications are not standardized and often imprecise. In addition, there are no standards for radiometry measuring equipment specifications and test methods, and little knowledge of what measurements are important for accurate comparison of UV LED curing systems and their production performance.

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