The idea of marking medical devices with a unique identifier has been around for many years, but was only passed into law in the USA in 2007. After a few years of discussion, the final rules regarding the Unique Device Identification system (UDI) were implemented in 2013, and now all medical devices must be marked in this way.
The motivation behind this move is simple enough – in the investigation of several clinical incidents, it was found that the medical devices in use could not be traced to a high enough degree of specificity. Implementing the UDI requirements was therefore an attempt to allow devices to be traced to their place of manufacture.
The rules for the UDI system requires device labelers to include a unique device identifier on labels and packages, except in certain cases where the law allows for an exception or alternative. Every identifier must be provided in a human-readable, plain text format as well as a form that uses automatic identification and data capture (AIDC) technology.
Devices intended for more than one use must have their identifier marked directly onto the device, and dates must be printed in a standard format that is compatible with international standards and practice.
The identifier is a unique alphanumeric code that consists of two parts:
a device identifier (DI), a mandatory, fixed portion of a UDI that identifies the labeler and the specific version or model of a device, and
a production identifier (PI), a conditional, variable portion of a UDI that identifies one or more of the following when included on the label of a device:
the lot or batch number within which a device was manufactured;
the serial number of a specific device;
the expiration date of a specific device;
the date a specific device was manufactured;
the distinct identification code required by §1271.290(c) for a human cell, tissue, or cellular and tissue-based product (HCT/P) regulated as a device.
These identifiers will be issued by FDA-accredited issuing agencies. Device labelers seek such FDA accreditation, allowing them to label their products, and the laws regulating the UDI system specify what information such companies need to provide to the FDA in order to make this application.
Some exceptions and alternatives are also provided for in the UDI rules, to ensure that the cost of implementing it is kept to a minimum. In addition, it is expected that the system will go into effect slowly, being gradually phased in over the course of seven years, to allow manufacturers and other labellers time to adjust to the new regime.
Whilst the UDI system will inevitably impose new costs on medical device manufacturers and labelers, in reality most such organizations are already labeling their products with unique identifiers. The printers used today to print labels for medical devices are more than capable of printing complex, unique information onto medical packaging, whether this be made of paper or Tyvek.
For the production of medical packaging, there are really only two options – medical paper, or Tyvek. Yet even a cursory comparison reveals that Tyvek, in almost every respect that matters, is far superior to medical paper.
Amongst the advantages of Tyvek for medical applications are the fact that it offers greater microbial penetration resistance than medical paper, has greater tear strength, is more resistant to punctures, and offers clean peel. In addition, Tyvek is compatible with all of the most commonly used sterilization procedures, unlike medical paper.
These advantages are a direct consequence of the way in which Tyvek is made. Whilst superficially similar to paper, Tyvek is actually made of spundbound Olefin fibers, each between 0.5-10 µm in width, which are compressed and heated in order to bond them together. This construction technique gives Tyvek its great strength, and also makes it totally waterproof.
Tyvek offers the following advantages over medical paper:
Perhaps the most important factor to consider when choosing a material for medical packaging is the degree to which it resists microbial penetration. Ideally, the packaging used for medical devices should allow the devices to stay sterile from the point of sterilization until the package is opened.
Tyvek, in every test conducted to date, resists microbial penetration better than medical paper, and in fact any other material used for medical packaging. Further, these tests indicate that Tyvek is able to maintain sterility for up to 5 years if packaging is not damaged.
TEAR STRENGTH AND PUNCTURE RESISTANCE
Medical packaging sometimes has to deal with quite harsh environments. It should be able to maintain its integrity during rough handling, and also retain strength when wet.
Tyvek performs better than all grades of medical paper when it comes to these tests. It offers greater resistance to tearing and puncturing than paper, and retains all of its strength when wet. In addition, the fact that Tyvek is puncture resistant means that even if a package is slightly damaged, it will not tear open further.
When printing on Tyvek as opposed to medical paper, one of its huge advantages is its resistance to breakage. Test after test has shown that under stress, Tyvek is much stronger than medical paper.
This attribute is espcially useful for printers, because it reduces the downtime caused by material breakages during the printing process. Tyvek rolls are commonly fed through industrial printers for hours without significant problems.
Tyvek is very resistant to water damage, in distinct contrast to most forms of medical paper. In fact, when water comes into contact with Tyvek it neither soaks in nor spread across the surface, instead remaining as droplets.
Another advantage of this water resistance is that certain forms of sterilization process – namely those based on ethylene oxide – use water as a medium in the process. Since paper absorbs water, it reduces the efficacy of this technique, whereas there is no such problem with Tyvek.
Overall, Tyvek is by far the better medium for medical packaging, offering greater microbial penetration resistance than medical paper, greater tear strength, and more resistance to punctures. In addition, Tyvek is compatible with all of the most commonly used sterilization procedures, unlike medical paper.
If you want to use Tyvek to manufacture medical packaging for various products, there are a few aspects to consider. Tyvek is a widely used material that’s used as packaging for many applications such as medical equipment and tools, along with labels on hospital equipment and more. If you’re new to printing on Tyvek, you need to understand the labeling requirements in place for sterile packaging, which apply to Tyvek along with other materials. These stringent and complicated requirements are dictated by a variety of ISO, ANSI, and UDI codes. These codes will inform the design of your custom Tyvek labels.
In addition to requirements, you need to consider the specific printer type and model you’ll need to use for Tyvek printing of medical packaging. There are many printers available to use, which is why it’s essential to find the right one that provides consistent quality, profitability, and reliability. For some of the best results, our ThermaPrint 64 is one of the most reliable for printing medical packaging.
Here, we’ll review the benefits of printing on Tyvek and what the process entails, along with more information about the specific labeling requirements in place for Tyvek printing.
Why Print on Medical-Grade Tyvek?
Tyvek is often used for medical applications over medical paper because of the numerous benefits it offers. Some of the benefits you can get with Tyvek that aren’t available with medical paper include the following.
Easier to Sterilize
Tyvek is generally easier to sterilize compared to medical paper due to its resistance to microbial penetration. It can also maintain sterility for as long as five years if packaging remains intact.
Resistance to Breakage and Other Damage
Apart from resistance to microbial penetration, Tyvek is also highly resistant to breakage, punctures, and moisture. All other grades of medical paper, on the other hand, are vulnerable to these potential hazards.
Great for Medical Pouches
Tyvek is also highly flexible. Combined with Tyvek’s sterility, this feature makes it ideal for use in sterilization pouches for medical equipment and tools.
How Do You Print on Tyvek?
When printing medical packaging on Tyvek, thermal transfer printing is the preferred method to use. However, when using the thermal transfer method, you will need the right medical printer to avoid damaging the Tyvek substrate. While Tyvek closely resembles grades of medical paper, it consists of Olefin fibers with a width of 0.5-10 µm. These fibers require compression and heating to fuse them together, which is what makes Tyvek one of the most durable materials for medical packaging and labeling. The water-resistant nature of Tyvek also causes most inks intended for porous materials to merely run off the material’s surface, a problem that thermal techniques help solve.
To meet the needs of Tyvek printing applications, the ThermaPrint 64 is ideal for solving most potential issues when printing on this material. The ThermaPrint 64 is capable of handling complex orders using reliable processors that are designed to work with multiple items within a single print run. ThermaPrint 64 printers can also meet the various requirements for accurate labeling and barcodes to maintain compliance with UDI codes and others.
What Information Is Required?
Medical-grade Tyvek pouches, labels, and other materials require a unique device identifier (UDI). To meet UDI requirements for medical devices, labels need to include a unique numeric or alphanumeric code. Both machines and humans need to be able to read these codes to properly identify the product or device, including details such as lot number, expiration date, and other identifying information. A UDI system can help facilitate proper identification from production to the time a product or device is used for patient care.
With UDI systems in place that adhere to FDA guidelines, facilities and staff can keep patients safer, with the ability to identify potential mistakes and correct them accordingly.
Print on Medical Tyvek with DoraniX Printers
Tyvek offers many benefits that make it better for medical printing applications than medical paper, but it’s important to make sure you have compatible printing equipment. To maintain both efficiency and compliance throughout the printing process, our ThermaPrint 64 printers can give you everything you need to print top-quality Tyvek products and labels.
To learn more about our products or request a video presentation, contact us today. You can also request a quote for our products to get started on a custom Tyvek printing solution.
Unique device identifiers (UDIs) refer to unique numeric or alphanumeric sequences used to differentiate medical devices from one another. They allow for easy identification of a particular medical device throughout manufacturing operations, within distribution channels, and during patient use. That’s why the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires medical devices manufactured and/or distributed in the United States to have their UDIs printed on their labels and packages and, in some cases, directly on their main bodies.
Given the importance of UDIs in the medical device industry, it is vital for a medical device manufacturer to invest in a quality UDI labeling print system. The following blog post provides an overview of how UDI printers are used for medical devices and where to get quality UDI printers.
An Introduction to UDI Printers for Medical Devices
The Important Uses of UDI Printers for Medical Devices
The UDI system benefits the medical device industry in many ways, including:
Allowing for faster identification of flawed devices
Facilitating product recalls
Improving equipment inventory tracking
Reducing incidences of medical errors
For these reasons, a quality UDI printer is an essential piece of equipment for any medical device labeler. UDI printers can be used to print UDI codes directly on medical devices or on the device’s packaging. As per FDA requirements, they need to print the codes in both human-readable and machine-readable formats; the former is commonly printed as plain text, while the latter is generally printed as a barcode. Additionally, they should be able to handle the number of UDIs, the materials on which the UDIs will be printed, and the volume of labels produced.
Innovative UDI Printers for Medical Devices From DoraniX
Looking for a UDI printer you can count on in your medical device labeling operations? Turn to the experts at DoraniX! We specialize in the supply of industrial printers and label printer-applicators. Our products find use in various industries, including the medical device industry.
Our direct-to-packaging printing system—Thermaprint 64—is suitable for a wide range of industrial operations, including UDI-related data printing and barcoding. It can clearly print on a variety of materials used in the medical industry, such as Tyvek bags and pouches, Tyvek surgical lids, and foil/poly pouches. Additionally, it can be configured to accommodate various labeling requirements to ensure seamless integration into customer operations.
Key features include:
High print resolution (305 DPI)
Low ribbon consumption (reduced ribbon consumption up to 90%)
Excellent processing power and memory capacity (64-bit processor and 16 MB memory)
Broad interface flexibility and networking capabilities (USB and Ethernet connections)
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) established a system designed to help adequately identify medical devices from manufacturing to distribution to patient use. It is known as the unique device identification (UDI) system.
Overview of the UDI System
The UDI system requires labelers of the device (generally the manufacturer) to add unique device identifiers on the labels and packages of the device. There are exceptions and alternatives to this rule. For example, if the device has a multi-use design that requires it to be reprocessed before each use, the UDI must also be marked directly on the device.
Another requirement of the UDI system is submitting the device information to the Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID). The device labeler must send the device’s unique identifiers—typically just the device identifier (DI), which identifies the labeler and the specific device model or version—so interested parties can obtain the information as needed.
Understanding UDI Formats
A UDI is a unique numeric or alphanumeric sequence that contains a device identifier (DI) and production identifier (PI). As stated above, the DI indicates the device’s labeler and specific model or version. It is a mandatory and fixed element. The PI indicates one or more of the following regarding a device: lot or batch number, serial number, expiration date, manufacturing date, and distinct identification code as per §1271.290(c). It is a conditional and variable element.
In an era of cleaner smoking options, vape cartridges have become very popular. Similar to their flavored nicotine-based counterparts, vape oils containing THC concentrates provide customers with greater freedom and a better vaping experience. However, regardless of the quality of the product, its success in the market necessitates packaging that offers both the appeal to connect with mass audiences and the flexibility to accurately brand your product.
Typical packaging used for vape cartridges includes blister cards, foil packs, and labels. Blister cards have long been a staple of the packaging industry. They’ve been used to package everything from electronics to medicine and are now being used to market vape cartridges. Like foil packs and labels, they require printers to add the necessary product information.
DoraniX’s ThermaPrint64 and its accessories are up to the task. These high-tech products can easily handle blister pack cards, foil packs, and labels. They have the capability to print labels on oddly shaped packaging materials of various thicknesses, including 10-inch wide blister packs up to a ~0.040-inch thickness (the highest of any standard card). Additionally, they are specifically designed to meet the requirements of both your customers and government regulations.
Equipped with extensive experience designing and manufacturing industrial printers and label printer applicators for various markets, the experts at DoraniX have put together the following guide to vape cartridge label printing. It highlights important label considerations, indicates label design challenges, discusses how the printing equipment works, and identifies what to look for in an ideal vape cartridge label printer.
Vape Cartridge Label 101
There are many factors to consider when designing a label for vape cartridges. Below, we discuss label elements and label materials.
A Unique Device Identification (UDI) system provides universal identification of medical devices at every stage from production to use in patient care. UDI utilizes both plain to read text and machine identifiable markers conveyed within Automatic Identification and Data Capture systems for ease of tracking. This system is made possible by the Global Unique Device Identification Database (GUDID), which provides a global standard to prevent misidentification and misuse of medical devices. Most devices have a UDI-DI (Device Identifier) that is linked to a more specific jurisdiction-based UDI database.
The FDA established the UDI system of identification to properly address the issue of medical device misidentification and track devices in the United States. With a UDI system in place that follows FDA guidelines, the human and machine-readable identifier improves patient safety and adds an extra way to identify mistakes and correct them before issues arise.
FDA Regulations for UDI Device Labels
The UDI Rule requires a UDI to be included on both device labels and packaging unless the rule provides an exception or alternative. For example, if a device is meant for multiple uses and is meant for reprocessing before each use, the UDI must be displayed directly on the device to ensure proper identification.
Device information must be submitted to GUDID and must be displayed in two forms: machine-readable form that uses automatic identification and data capture (AIDC) and plain text that is easily readable. AIDC is technology that is capable of reading and conveying the UDI in a digital form for use in databases. When the UDI is intended for use with AIDC, the dates must be presented using the international standard format (YYYY-MM-DD).
DoraniX’s UDI Printers and Equipment
DoraniX is proud to offer the latest in medical package printing solutions. With our customized ThermaPrint 64 series, we are able to print highly customizable variable data directly onto medical grade Tyvek, medical pouches, and surgical lids. These printers are capable of labeling packages at rapid rates, with many fonts, customizable features, and a high-definition print head of 305 DPI (Dots Per Inch).
Our UDI printing capabilities also include the use of Cognex DM262X barcode graders, which ensure readability and log and store every scanned label if necessary. Our Webscan Omni barcode verifier evaluates every label for quality and ensures defect-free prints. At customer request, we can use Webscan and Cognex optical inspection technology to inspect samples and create a barcode validation report.
DoraniX for your UDI Printing Needs
The FDA emphasizes the importance of medical package labeling. DoraniX has an exceptional reputation for providing quality products that yield quality results. If your medical devices need FDA compliant labeling, our friendly representatives are here to discuss your needs and find the right solution for you. For more information on our products and services, contact us today.
In the industrial and commercial sectors, many companies rely on conventional printing and labeling processes—such as inkjet printing, thermal transfer printing, and hand labeling—to add important information to their packaged products. While these methods on their own do offer certain advantages, newer printing and labeling techniques and technologies—such as integrated label printing, variable data printing, and, in particular, direct-to-product printing—can serve as more effective and efficient solutions for product manufacturers and distributors.
What Is Direct-to-Product Printing?
Direct-to-product printing refers to a printing method that adds designs directly to the surface of finished goods. Unlike traditional printing processes that generally only accommodate two-dimensional goods, this process also allows companies to print company names, logos, and other text and images onto three-dimensional products such as balls, bottles, and other novelty merchandise. Our printers, however, only print on flat, thin packaging, such as cards, pouches, and tags.
What Is Integrated Label Printing?
Some business forms (e.g., invoices or shipping documents) may have labels attached to them (i.e., integrated labels). By combining the necessary business information and labels onto a single sheet of adhesive-backed material, companies can decrease material waste and printing error rates while increasing printing efficiency and customer friendliness. Integrated label printing and direct-to-product printing together answer and address the printing and labeling needs of a wide range of standard and custom packaged goods, whether they require information printed on their direct surface and/or on separate product labels.
What Is Variable Data Printing?
Variable data printing (VDP) is a digital printing method that tailors the text and/or images printed to the recipient (i.e., the customer). By employing VDP, companies benefit in the following ways:
They can personalize their marketing efforts based on the information they have on the customer. For example, in direct promotional campaigns, they can adjust the mailing address, color schemes and images (to raise customer interest), and coupon codes (to facilitate tracking).
They can change the printed text and images on a standard layout to suit different promotional or personalization needs. The process accommodates use on business forms (e.g., invoices and letters) and products (e.g., calendars and other novelties).
For medical companies, key components – including expiration dates, lot numbers, and serial numbers – can be easily updated.
The variable data printing method can be used in conjunction with direct-to-product printing. Combined, they allow companies to customize their products and materials to suit their needs at the time, whether those requirements are driven by a new product campaign or customer preferences.
Customizable Printing Solutions From DoraniX
At DoraniX, we design and manufacture industrial printers and label printer-applicators suitable for use in the apparel, food, medical, and other packaging industries. Our specialization is in supplying integrated label printing solutions and direct to product printing for small to medium facilities and individual workcells in large facilities. Below we outline the customization options available for our products.
Customization Options for Thermaprint 64
Our Thermaprint 64 is a direct-to-packaging printing system designed for use in heavy-duty industrial applications. It is available in standard-format and wide-format variations. Key features of the series include:
Print resolution of 305 DPI
Ribbon-saving mechanism (reduces ribbon consumption by up to 90%)
16 Mb Memory
USB and Ethernet connectivity for greater interface flexibility and networking
Compatibility with an industrial cutter and roll feed module for configuration into a roll-to-sheet printing system
Some of the customization options for the LPA 8000 include:
Print speeds ranging from 2–10 IPS (programmable)
Slew speeds of 15 IPS
Print zone width of 4.2 or 5.0 inches
Package width of 2–6.5 inches
Package length of 4–24 inches
17 standard fonts (programmable)
Downloadable TrueType fonds
All common codes + 2D barcodes
Typical products processed with the Thermaprint 64 include apparel hang tags, barcodes, blister cards, medical pouches and lids, wristbands, coffee bags, and cannabis packaging.
Customization Options for LPA 8000
Our LPA 8000 printer system is a fully integrated label printer-applicator (LPA) featuring heavy-duty benchtop construction and state-of-the-art electronic controls. The integrated design reduces both the footprint and cost of the machine as well as allows for out-of-box operation with little to no setup or integration requirements. Key features of the LPA 800 include:
8-inch (diameter) supply roll
Integrated feed and conveyor
Throughput of up to 3,000 units per hour
Print resolution of 305 DPI
Some of the customization options for the LPA 8000 include:
Label width up to 6.0 inches
Label length up to 10 inches
Product width up to 18.5 inches
Product length up to 32 inches
Print speed of 8 IPS (minimum) powered by 4–6 motors
The system is suitable for printing on preformed medical pouches and lids, as well as cards, cartons, bags, sleeves, and tags for finished goods.
Customization Options for UDI Printers
Unique device identification (UDI) printers allow companies to add unique alphanumeric or numeric identifiers to products to minimize the risk of product identification errors. These tags are particularly important to industries with strict regulations regarding the tracking and tracing of products, such as the medical industry. Our ThermaPrint64 can be utilized as a UDI printer.
In the medical industry, UDIs allow interested parties to learn more about the product, including identifying information about it and its production. They consist of two main components:
Device information: a qualitative description of the product line’s make, model, and manufacturer
Production information: variable descriptors of the particular product such as the serial number, lot number, and expiration and manufacturing date that can take the form of a barcode or purely numerical code
The DoraniX team has extensive experience in serialized data printing, particularly UDI barcoding. Our UDI printers accommodate a wide range of materials, including those used in the medical device industry (e.g., Tyvek and foil/poly). Each system can be adjusted to account for variations in the material, including in regard to thickness, roughness, and adhesive or coating inclusion. The integration of an optional Cognex DM262X barcode scanner and grader allows for on-line barcode grading that does not diminish printing throughput.
Areas of Customized Printing
At DoraniX, our printing systems allow for direct-to-product printing, integrated label printing, and variable printing. Some examples of product applications for our printers include:
Apparel hang tags: The Thermaprint 64 can print apparel hang tags from pre-cut singles or rolls. The integration of a powerstacker enables faster loading of printed material up to 10 inches high.
Barcodes: The Thermaprint 64 can be used to produce barcodes and UDIs.
Blister cards: Our printers can create blister cards in widths of up 10 inches and thicknesses of up to 0.040 inches.
Tyvek pouches and lids: Thermaprint 64 units are ideal for medical printing applications. They offer good print quality and fast print speeds for common medical materials, such as Tyvek.
Tyvek wristbands: The Thermaprint 64 prints on wristbands intended for applications ranging from patient identification in hospitals to attendee identification at festivals and events. Each bracelet is durable (tear resistant and waterproof), comfortable, and disposable.
Coffee bags: Similar to the medical industry, the food and beverage industries are subject to strict guidelines regarding product packaging and labeling. Our printing systems allow for the production of high-quality product labels—with pertinent information—for coffee bags and other packaged goods.
Cannabis packages: Our Thermaprint 64 units can be adapted for use in cannabis packaging printing applications. They can print on pre-cut single labels or a roll of labels.
For additional information about our printing systems and how they can benefit your application, contact us today. To get pricing details, request a quote.
Industrial printing involves the application of ink or other materials onto mass-produced products for decorative or functional purposes. The process may be used to create patterns on the surface of a material, apply branding or logos, and provide instructions on the product itself. In addition, industrial printing is often used to print working materials onto surfaces, such as conductors in electronics and printed circuit boards (PCBs).
The two most common industrial printing methods are flexographic and on-demand printing. Flexographic printing is a mechanical process which employs large scale presses and rollers to create uniform patterns and print designs for large production runs. Conversely, on-demand printing involves the separate printing of customized individual pieces.
What is Flexographic Printing?
Flexographic printing uses a roll-fed press to repeatedly print the same pattern onto a material with exceptional speed and consistency. This method is widely used in the production of uniform consumer products, such as:
To produce the print, polymer sheets exhibiting a raised pattern with the desired design are wrapped around a series of cylinders dedicated to each color. The rotary press rolls the pattern through the ink, passes it through an anilox roller to remove excess material, and deposits it onto the substrate. Each consecutive color is applied using an individual cylinder as the material is passed through the press. The ink is then dried using heat or UV light, depending on the material and ink used.
What is On-Demand or Variable Data Printing?
As technology advances, more customizable printing methods are becoming available for industrial use. On-demand printing, also known as variable data printing, uses digital equipment to create and apply patterns, graphics, and text to products with variation between pieces. This automated process allows for quick and efficient printing with adjusted details. This is particularly useful for addressing postcards, advertising materials, and other products which require personalized information.
On-demand printing can be used to generate products with varying levels of customization within the same printing run, from simple name changes to variable fields throughout the printed material. The printed material is designed using specialized software which allows for fundamental formatting and pulls variable information from a linked source or database.
The Differences Between Flexographic & On-Demand Printing
Flexographic and on-demand printing each offer unique benefits for specific production needs. If you need fixed and uniform patterns, images, or text on products in a large scale production run, flexographic printing is an excellent production option. Of note, the equipment used for flexographic printing is highly specialized and can take up a great deal of space. In addition, operators must monitor flexographic printing processes to ensure that the ink is being applied correctly, as the process is typically used for very large orders and errors can be very costly and time-consuming.
On-demand printing is highly versatile, with a variety of options for customization and personalized printing. Advances in technology allow for the design of individual pieces without slowing the printing process, offering a modern and technologically advanced printing option even on larger production runs. In addition to versatility, on-demand printing equipment is much more compact than flexographic equipment and the potential for expensive errors is significantly lower.
On-Demand Printing From DoraniX
DoraniX is pleased to offer the most technologically advanced direct-to-product printing services for everything from cut sheets to pouches and bags, including medical-grade Tyvek. Our state-of-the-art ThermaPrint 64 standard and wide systems offer the added advantage of single thermal transfer printing. In addition to our superior direct printing services, we offer a comprehensive line of integrated label printer applicator (LPA) systems for use on pouches, lids, cartons, sleeves, and other pre-formed products.
At DoraniX, we use the most advanced printing methods in the industry. Our customers can depend on us to set the standard for top quality printing services using the latest innovative technology on the market. To learn how DoraniX’s cutting edge printing technology can improve your products, contact us or request a quote.
Thermal transfer printing and inkjet printing are two of the most common and reliable industrial printing processes. There are distinct differences between the two, so it’s important to know the advantages of each type and for which projects they are most suitable. This blog post will discuss thermal transfer printing and inkjet printing, how they work, their advantages, their differences, and their suitable applications.
What is Thermal Transfer Printing?
Thermal transfer printing is a cost-effective industrial printing method that uses a ribbon and a heated printer head. The head heats the ribbon, which transfers pigment onto the paper or other substrate. Thermal transfer printing ribbons are made of wax, resin, or a combined wax/resin hybrid.
These ribbons differ in capability, so it’s important to understand the details of your project before selecting a thermal transfer ribbon. Wax ribbons are cheaper and fine for short-term projects, resin ribbons are more expensive and required for long-term projects or printing jobs that require exceptional quality, and hybrid ribbons fall somewhere in the middle.
Thermal transfer printing offers a number of benefits, such as:
High-definition printing for optimal reading and scanning
Long-life image stability
Easy to learn and use
Virtually zero waste
Minimal long-term maintenance costs
Near-limitless printing capabilities
More durable than other industrial printing options
Produces durable glossy prints that can’t be easily written or marked on
What is Inkjet Printing?
Inkjet printing is another versatile and cost-effective solution for industrial printing. Unlike thermal transfer printing, which relies on heat and a ribbon to transfer ink, inkjet printing uses liquid ink ejected from the cartridge in very small dots—a single printed inch may contain thousands of dots. These dots ultimately combine to create images or text and facilitate the printing of nearly any color or design.
Industrial inkjet printing has its own distinct advantages, including:
Can print on a wide range of substrates
Easy to use with minimal setup
Printers require no warm-up time
Produces photo-quality images
The Difference Between Thermal Transfer and Inkjet Printing
Despite the versatility of both thermal transfer and inkjet printing, there are distinct differences between the two printing processes beyond the printing processes themselves. Some of the primary differences include:
While inkjet printers generate very high-quality images, thermal printing images tend to be of a higher quality with better color saturation.
Thermal transfer printers are more durable because they have fewer moving parts than inkjet printers. They also tend to have a much longer service life.
Equipment cost: Thermal transfer printers tend to be more expensive than industrial inkjet printers, but their longer service life ensures that they are worth the investment. Thermal ink is typically more expensive than inkjet cartridges.
Thermal printing is significantly faster than inkjet printing, making it better suited to high-volume printing runs.
When it comes to printing on Tyvek, thermal transfer printing is optimal for medical-grade Tyvek, while inkjet-coated Tyvek isn’t suitable for medical use, as the Tyvek needs to be porous to sterilize the packed contents.
Thermal Transfer Printing From DoraniX
At DoraniX, we design and manufacture industrial-grade thermal transfer printers that are suitable for product identification, barcoding, branding, and much more. Our specialty is providing integrated label printing solutions for your business. Our signature products are our Thermaprint 64 Series printers, which provide direct-to-package printing capabilities, as well as our LPA 8000 printer, which is a fully integrated label printer application system. Additionally, our thermal transfer printers make it easier to print on medical-grade Tyvek.
Our printing products are the best on the market and have served many industries. We pride ourselves in delivering high-quality printers and printing services to our customers every time. If you would like to learn more about DoraniX and why our printing solutions might be right for your business, contact us or request a quote today!