Dr. Schalk, the new UV LEDs will make their debut at Drupa. What makes them so unique?
Dr. Schalk: It’s the simple things that make our lives easier. That's why we have combined complex LED technology with easy operation in Semray® to offer our customers a user-friendly UV LED system. With Semray®, our customers can react very quickly to changes in curing requirements, optimize solutions for their clients, and expand their business model as necessary.
What does Heraeus bring to the table for the food industry when it comes to UV technology?
Dr. Schalk: Two things come to mind. Heraeus offers UV solutions for considerably extending the shelf life of packaged foods without preservatives. The surfaces of the packaged goods are exposed to cold ultraviolet light, which inactivates microorganisms and sterilizes the surfaces. It’s fast, reliable, and long-lasting.
Another completely different UV process is used to cut down on grease and odors in commercial kitchens. Pungent odors are unpleasant and grease buildup is not only unhygienic but also poses a serious fire hazard. Special UV systems can be installed in exhaust hoods and air ducts to neutralize grease and odors and remove them. It’s an innovative system for improving air quality.
What is the one area of application for UV technology that was most surprising to you?
Dr. Schalk: I am frequently surprised, because UV processes are integrated into the middle of industrial production processes and aren’t always visible. For instance, did you know that your soda can has been treated with UV light? In a process called bottom rim coating, the base of the cans is given a coating that is cured with UV light. This makes the can slippery, so it moves more smoothly through the filling line, increasing filling speeds and leading to fewer rejects.