| Most plastics are naturally nonpolar and
typically carry additives and demolding agents on their surface so that
inks, coatings, or adhesives donít easily stick to them. For example,
inks and paints often just run off newly thermoformed or molded parts
that have inert, nonporous, low-energy surfaces. Surface treatment of
3-D parts facilitates high quality printing, allows for clear readable
markings on the surface and improves the adhesion of labels and
|| INPRO Technologies represents a
line of surface treatment equipment manufactured by Enercon Industries www.enerconind.com. Enercon
offers various technologies for the in-line treatment of 3-D parts, all
of which offer an economical alternative to chemical primers, batch
treatment or use of specialized coatings & adhesives.
| Blown Arc
Enerconís Blown Arc System is
a powerful and economical way to improve surface adhesion on 3-D parts.
Air plasma is formed by blowing atmospheric air past high-voltage
powered electrodes and is sometimes referred to as corona treatment.
The electrical discharge positively charges the ion particles
surrounding it. Through direct contact, these particles positively
charge the treated area of the objectís surface. This makes the surface
more receptive to any applied substance, including inks, coatings or
adhesives. The Blown Arc Systemís unique design generates an aggressive
blown arc discharge that is ideal for higher line speeds and demanding
applications. It is available as either a single or double head unit,
depending on the surface area to be treated. Ideal for PE, PP, PET,
nylon, vinyl, polystyrene, polycarbonate and PVC, the Blown Arc System is
easy to use and inexpensive to operate.
Blown-ion air plasma systems
push pressurized air past a single electrode which discharges inside
the treater head. The eletrode creates positively charged ions in the
surrounding air particles. The air pressure forces the air particles to
accelerate out of the tip of the head as a high-velocity stream of
charged ions directed toward the substrate surface. Through direct
contact, these particles positively charge the objectís surface,
increasing its surface energy and making it more receptive to inks and
coatings. Air plasma is a popular surface-treatment technology because
it is effective, easy to use and inexpensive to operate. In addition to
treating a variety of plastics, the Blown Ion System is ideal for the
treatment of conductive surfaces, electronic parts, and glass.
A plasma field is formed
when flammable gas and air are combined and combusted to form an
intense blue flame. Brief exposure to the energized particles within
the flame affects the distribution and density of electrons on the
substrateís surface and polarizes surface molecules through oxidation.
This method also deposits other functional chemical groups that further
promote ink wetting and adhesion. Enerconís Dyne-A-Flame treater
generates more heat than other methods, but creates greater surface
energies with longer shelf life. Flame treatment is commonly used to
process injection and blow-molded parts because of the thickness, size
and shape of the parts.
| Narrow Web
Enercon Industries offers both
standard and custom designs for narrow web corona treating. The CoronaFlex
compact treater fits virtually all narrow web presses. A clamshell design
facilitates easy web threading, and hinged and slip-off electrode
cartridges can be easily removed, making cleaning and maintenance a breeze.
No tools, disassembly, realignment or air gap adjustment is required. The
power supply is built right into the station and ducting for ozone removal
has been positioned to maximize operator work space. This series is
available in up to 32" (810 mm) treat widths. The CoronaFlex treater
combines the power supply and treating station into one easy-to-install unit.
Variable chemistry plasma
(VCP) is formed using basic principles found in air-plasma and
flame-plasma treatment. Much like an air-plasma field, a chemistry
plasma field is generated in an electrically charged atmosphere.
Instead of air, this method relies on other gases, typically argon or
helium, that deposit various chemical groups on the substrate surface
to improve its surface energy. Variable chemistry plasma treatment is
essentially a fine etching process that provides different surface
characteristics depending on the gas chemistry employed. Enerconís
Dyne-A-MiteVCP systems are the most gentle and advanced of the
technologies and are ideal for delicate and hard to treat materials.