What Is UV Printing: Quick Basics
Printing is surprisingly, a complex process. It has adapted to changing times by offering different features to suit modern needs. This article will be of interest to you as it explains what is UV printing and how you can benefit from it.
A Quick Guide: All About UV Printing
To understand what UV printing is and how it differs from traditional printing, we must identify some key differences.
Conventional vs. UV printing
- ink dries naturally on paper
- uses solvent-based inks
- solvents evaporate, and the paper absorbs the ink
- releases VOC (volatile organic compound) to the air
- colors will differ because of paper absorption
- drying can take time
- cannot be printed on other materials like plastic
- uses special UV inks that dry almost immediately
- ink is exposed to UV lights, drying the ink upon contact by turning liquid into a solid state
- does not release VOCs into the air
- very minimal evaporation of solvents
- no ink absorption on paper
- they don't smudge
- can print on any material with UV inks like plastic or foil
Based on this comparison, UV printing is an efficient way of printing on any material other than paper.
The benefits of UV printing
1. Environment friendly
- Because UV inks don't release VOCs into the air, they are considered a "green" alternative to conventional printing means.
2. Prints on other materials
- The general rule of thumb is that as long as the material fits your UV printer, you can print it with UV ink. You're not limited to paper. You can try printing on glass, ceramic, or plastic!
- UV printing dries ink fast since it starts the drying process as soon as the ink makes contact on the surface. In effect, it saves your time and effort when working on multiple projects.
- UV printing does not require any coatings because of its speedy drying time, resulting in savings and high-quality output.
5. Bright and vibrant output
- UV lighting does not allow ink to be absorbed by the paper. Because of this feature, it produces more photorealistic effects that make for excellent commercial brochures or signs.
UV Printing Uses
Now that you have an idea about what UV printing is, we can look into some of the ways UV printing is used commercially.
- Signage printing – Some emergency signs require specific colors printed on materials like plastic. If you see Fire Exit or Exit and Entrance signages, this is most likely a result of UV printing.
- Cases for phones, iPads, or laptops – Are you using a phone case with an elaborate design? Your favorite laptop or phone case design is a result of UV printing.
- Trophies – Most trophies and plaques are printed using UV printing technology. The next time you go on stage to receive an award, you'll be sure it utilized UV printing technology.
UV printing technology doesn't come cheap. It is used commercially for a variety of materials that we unknowingly use every day. Now that you know what UV printing is and its many benefits, consider this environment-friendly technology for your next set of business cards.