By replacing halogen emitters with Heraeus carbon infra-red emitters, Calmatech has been able to halve the time required to dry screen printing on T shirts.
The new heaters have also proved more energy-efficient and have improved the quality of the finished product.
The medium wavelength of the carbon infra-red emitters is optimally suited for surface drying, as this wavelength closely matches the absorption characteristics of water. By contrast, the short wavelength of halogen lamps is more penetrative so that energy is lost as it penetrates the ink and the textile itself.
Since the replacement, the new emitters, which are fitted precisely in the dryers to create an even heat distribution over the target textile surface and are easily programmable by an operator or by automatic control, have demonstrated significant energy savings. This is because of the better water-removal capability of medium wave radiation and also because carbon emitters have a very short response time. Consequently, they are suitable for pulsing and are switched on only when required, in contrast to the halogen emitters, which needed to be switched on permanently.
“>Jurgen van Oostrum, managing director at Calmatech, said: “The switch to carbon emitters has made our flash cure much more efficient. Formerly, it took seven to eight seconds to dry screen inks with the halogen system. With the carbon emitters it now takes just two to three seconds. This is of great benefit to our customers, who are very appreciative of the energy savings resulting from the reduced drying times. They are also very pleased with the fact that the less-penetrative medium wave dries the textile surface more gently, without discolouration and without heating the print pallet.”