1. Wavelength - IR drying with medium wavelength emitters such as Heraeus Carbon IR (CIR) technology, are most efficient for drying water-based inks. If the press will be used to print onto materials which absorb the ink such as napkins and uncoated cardboard, then consider using a hybrid emitter such as the Heraeus twin tube which emits both short wave and medium wave IR. This combination of wavelengths provides both surface drying and drying in deeper layers where the ink is absorbed.
2. Power Density – IR emitters with high power density mean higher production speeds are possible in a smaller footprint.
3. Heat management – Choosing a medium wavelength IR emitter such as the CIR means there’s no need for water cooling which simplifies your press design. Automated temperature controls adjust the emitters to prevent damage to heat sensitive substrates during production, changeovers, and stoppages. For especially heat sensitive substrates such as films, a fan can provide additional cooling.
4. Controls – IR emitters are essentially instant on/off, so tying their operation into the press operation saves energy costs and prevents heat buildup in the press. For example, it is possible to use a PID controller to program the desired drying temperature alongside a pyrometer which monitors substrate temperatures to adjust the CIR emitters accordingly. Also, if no paper is being fed, the emitters can go to standby, or if there is a press stoppage, they can switch off.