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Differences Between Water-based Ink and UV Ink

Date:2024-05-22  From:Star Color   


I. What is Water-based Ink

Water-based ink, also known as water-soluble ink or aqueous ink, is an ink system that uses water as the primary solvent. It primarily consists of pigments, dyes, water-based resins, water, and various additives. Due to the use of water as a diluent, water-based ink has the advantages of low odor, low pollution, and high environmental performance. Additionally, it has good printing adaptability and drying properties, making it widely used in food packaging, pharmaceutical packaging, children's toys, and other fields.

II. What is UV Ink

UV ink, also known as ultraviolet-curable ink, is an ink that achieves rapid curing through ultraviolet light exposure. It primarily consists of pigments, prepolymers, monomers, photoinitiators, and additives. UV ink does not require drying equipment during the printing process, and the printed products can be processed immediately after printing, significantly improving production efficiency. Furthermore, UV ink boasts vivid colors, lightfastness, abrasion resistance, and chemical resistance, making it widely used in high-end packaging, labels, advertisements, and other fields.

water-based ink

III. Comparison of the Differences

  1. Curing Method: Water-based ink achieves curing primarily through the evaporation of water and the drying of resins. In contrast, UV ink undergoes a crosslinking reaction between prepolymers when exposed to ultraviolet light, forming a solid film for curing.

  2. Drying Speed: UV ink has a significantly faster drying speed compared to water-based ink due to its ultraviolet curing technology. This gives UV ink a clear advantage in production efficiency.

  3. Printing Effect: The film formed after UV ink curing has high hardness and abrasion resistance, resulting in vivid and saturated colors with high gloss. Water-based ink, on the other hand, produces a softer and more natural color effect.

  4. Environmental Friendliness: Water-based ink, with water as its primary solvent, has high environmental performance and aligns with the current trend of green printing. UV ink also exhibits environmental benefits as it does not produce volatile organic compounds (VOCs) during curing.

  5. Application Fields: Due to its superior performance, UV ink is more suitable for high-end packaging, labels, advertisements, and other fields. In contrast, water-based ink is more suitable for food packaging, pharmaceutical packaging, and other fields with high environmental requirements.

water-based ink and UV ink each have their unique advantages and applicable scopes. When selecting ink, comprehensive consideration should be given based on specific needs and application scenarios.