Coding and Marking: Ink consideration when serializing
Labeling in Pharmaceutical is absolutely vital. It is a major element of identifying of the medicine. Ensuring that a label printed on the drug stays for its shelf life is mission critical and cannot be compromised. The subject in question is Coding and Marking and it must be understood in totality to achieve compliant results.
When serializing, labeling and printing operations gets complicated. You require a printing quality of at least 300DPI. This means, using a continuous Inkjet Printer is out of the question. The only options remain are Thermal Inkjet, Laser or TTO. All the three types of printer come with its own pros and cons.
TTO and Laser Printers are good, however they do compromise on speeds. Thermal Inkjets can however prove reliable and can allow to print up to 100 meters per minute, which results in excess of 400 packs* per minute without compromising Print Quality. 300DPI is easily achievable provided the right configuration of Conveyor is available.
When using a Thermal Inkjet Printer, drying time becomes a concern because of high speed. Either you have to compromise speed, or use the right ink type, with quick drying time.
By experience Aqueous Solvent Ink or Water Based is highly recommended. However, to use a Water based ink, it is important that the substrate is able to hold the aqueous ink.
In case of glossy substrate, aqueous ink cannot be used as it is not stable on glossy, shiny, coated or laminated substrates. If a laminated media must be used for labeling, MEK solvents can be used, however due to the environmental conditions, speeds of conveyors and positioning of head – speed of printing may need to be compromised in order to achieve stable results.