Printing services provider Daetwyler USA (Huntersville, NC) has added LaserClean (Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands) laser cleaning equipment to its product and service offering. The equipment uses lasers, rather than solvents or abrasives, to remove residues from inks, coatings, lacquers, and adhesives commonly used in the flexographic printing industry.
LaserClean's cleaning technology reduces downtime associated with cleaning anilox rollers and sleeves—in some cases, it can be used without taking a press offline. The laser vaporizes inks and other residues without additional cleanup, storage, and eventual disposal of solvents, and what used to take hours or sometimes days to return a press to running condition can be done in far less time.
Even though LaserClean delivers intensive cleaning results, it does so without causing damage to roller surfaces like abrasives, says Marty Cansler, managing director of sales and marketing at Daetwyler USA. The laser’s light consists of microscopic photon particles that are able to reach all the way into the deepest cells of the roller’s surface. Pollutants such as ink, residue, and coatings absorb the laser’s energy and are then vaporized. Because the ceramic surface of the roller does not absorb the laser’s energy, it is not impacted in any way by the laser. The residue waste can then be swept up and disposed of without hazmat procedures or storage requirements.
Daetwyler will be offering three different LaserClean machines for purchase, each optimized to meet specific needs of narrow, medium, and wide web presses, as well as offering LaserClean as part of their service offering.