13 October 2019 Digital Printing Technologies

Memjet extends life of DuraLink printhead

The DuraLink XL printhead will fire 200 litres of ink before replacement is needed, opening the door to high productivity applications for the thermal inkjet technology.

Memjet has released an enhanced version of its DuraLink printhead, extending its operating life to 200 litres of ink, four times the current stated lifetime. This reduces the need to switch heads to a level that supports long run printing.

The development follows feedback from OEM partners that had signed up for the Duralink second generation printhead. “As these partners enter into the lengthy development process, they provide valuable insight on how DuraLink meets their needs, and, more importantly, how we can make the technology even better,” says Eric Owen, general manager at Memjet.

The first products employing Duralink are now coming to market and include continuous feed, label, corrugated and flexible packaging applications. More than 60% of those signing up as OEMs are working on packaging products, says Owen. At the San Diego development labs the company has a rig for continuous feed printing with seven stations for printheads, allowing tests for substrates and technology needed for packaging. The additional inks on offer cover orange, green and violet.

Each head is dedicated to a single colour and has five rows of nozzles, providing four levels of redundancy should an individual nozzle become blocked or fail. With corrugated board, Memjet can position the heads 3mm above the substrate surface to minimise risk of a strike on the nozzle plate, which is hardened to further reduce the risk of damage.

Memjet anticipates growth in this segment driven by the print on demand requirements of online retail, printing the outer packaging at the point of wrapping, with particular growth in printing on the inside of the package which is invisible until the intended recipient opens their purchase.

“We expect to see applications where print is integrated into packing lines. And we expect growth from Asia – this will bring Asia alive,” says Owen. In Europe, label printing has been the best sector to date. “We are seeing label presses go wider and faster and pushing into commercial printing,” he says. “And DuraLink XL will help the transition of flexible packaging to digital printing.”

The components in the water based pigment inks meet European regulations addressing a crucial issue of packaging. An agreement with Global Graphics on Rip technology gives dot level control of the print, printing down to 2pt text.

By Gareth Ward

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Range of samples

Range of samples

Just weeks after announcing the Duraflex printhead, Memjet has introduced a major enhancement to its Duralink head, increasing its appeal to developers of production focused equipment in packaging as well as commercial print.

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