A lot of people assume that any wide-format printer that uses UV-curable inks will suffice for direct printing on glass. However, the reality is harsh, meaning it will not work that easily. In fact, further levels of expertise and industrial inkjet printing are necessary when printing on glass.
Industrial Inkjet Systems for Glass
Although it is easier to print and apply decals, films, and labels, these solutions are ideal for smaller glass areas that do not last for even five years. However, industrial inkjet systems that have ceramic inks will work ideally for higher-end and larger-scale glass decorating. In fact, these ceramic inks can last for up to decades despite harsh environmental conditions. Such ceramic inks enable direct printing without primers, and these permanently fuse with glass while processing inside an infrared dryer.
Searching for Industrial Inks
Nowadays, more and more industrial inks for glass are available. Thus, you can either opt for local stores or shop online, whichever works best for you. Of course, you should visit https://www.needham-ink.com/speciality-inks/contact-coding/ to check on high-quality industrial ink products.
Flat glass is quite versatile since it can come in different thickness and various properties for different functions. Manufacturers can have them be heat-treated, laminated, tempered, and chemically-strengthened. With these enhancements, even glass can withstand car crashes, chemical spills, explosions, and hurricanes. Yes, you’ve read that correctly, after all, flat glass can be quite the sturdy material. Often, it is ideal for structural components for buildings.
Decorative and Functional
Since glass is a non-porous, transparent substrate, standards of ink have to be higher for them. Thus, only industrial ink will suffice, and these can even be decorative yet functional. The key to that is digital ceramic printing, which can alter the density of printed patterns. In fact, even the range of visible light that can enter a room or the absorbed spectrum of light by a solar panel is controllable with ceramic printing. Thanks to both industrial inkjets and ceramic printing, architects and engineers now have more possibilities for their products.
For glass printing, UV-curable inks may not suffice, so there is the option of industrial ceramic inks. These are ideal for high-end and larger-scale glass printing, and these last quite long, for decades at least. With industrial inks and flat glass, architects can alter various properties, such as printing density, the range of visible light that can pass through the glass, and so on.