Folex Coating GmbH in Cologne, Germany have added UV curing capability to their principal coating line.
Folex is a coating and finishing specialist converting a wide variety of films and foils for offset, gravure and inkjet printing applications and the electronics industry.
In 2016 Folex installed a UV curing station on their principal coating line and integrated a GEW-made 67in-wide NUVA2 UV system with an 18kW RHINO electronic power supply. The UV lamphead is positioned over an 31.5in-diameter temperature controlled roller with the ability to operate within a range from 59 to 266°F, depending on the substrate, to achieve an optimized UV-curing effect. The configuration is able to convert substrates up to 65in wide with speeds up to 50ft/min and media with thicknesses between 0.2mil and 79mil. It is mostly used to coat PET films.
The UV system is mounted in a custom designed motorized aluminum frame which allows the lamphead to be lifted away from the moving web when UV curing is not in use.
The coating line operates in a controlled environment and the air-cooling and ozone extraction of the UV system is designed to achieve zero net consumption of air-conditioned ambient air.
Managing director Dr Thomas Dietrich explains: “We are extremely happy with the installation, the performance and the support we get from GEW.“
The decision in favor of GEW’s technology was based on the positive experience and convincing results with a comparable UV system at the Folex plant in Switzerland.
Adds Dietrich: “GEW was able to offer us a comprehensive package of efficiency and reliability backed up with the security of a 5-year warranty.”
GEW’s Embedded Service, which is part of the RHINO package, enables engineers to remotely access performance data and proactively detect parameters outside the permitted tolerances and immediately take the necessary maintenance steps even before a fault can develop. This type of preventive remote maintenance ensures that the entire UV system works at its peak performance at all times thus avoiding unplanned machine stoppages and waste of resources.
UV systems based on GEW’s highly efficient NUVA2 lampheads achieve particularly fast warm-up and cool-down cycles realizing substantial electricity and time savings.
Dietrich concludes: “The NUVA2 UV lamphead together with the RHINO power supply enables us to minimize our electricity consumption and to further increase our capacity whilst enjoying stable production with more uptime.”
Since the initial GEW installation Folex have already invested in three additional GEW systems to harmonize their UV technology across their sites.
Folex was founded in 1951 and is still a family-owned company with coating and materials technology as its core business. The company‘s history however goes back to the 1860s when Dr Carl Schleussner, then in Frankfurt, established a successful business in the industrial manufacture of photographic chemicals and X-ray plates. Today the group employs 220 staff and besides the site in Cologne the group operates production facilities in Erlangen, Germany and in Schwyz, Switzerland. The acquisitions of Technoplast in 1989 and Regulus in 2013 enabled Folex to further widen its product range to include graphic arts and digital printing media.
GEW (EC) Limited is a world-leading manufacturer of robust, energy-efficient UV curing systems for printing and coating applications. GEW UV systems are designed for operation in the most challenging conditions and come with a comprehensive 5-year warranty unique in its industry. Besides its headquarters and factory in England, GEW owns subsidiaries in the US, Germany and India, and operates a network of international distributors worldwide.