Nanotechnology: Let printing move towards "green manufacturing"

Nowadays, there are many calls for transformation and upgrading. Hi-tech is an area that brings many opportunities to the printing industry. Good technology must first form a good product with strong stability, and a good product must become a good commodity with a price advantage. These two stages are difficult to pass for the development of new technologies. The application of nanotechnology and the development of printed electronics have answered two questions that high-tech needs to respond to when it is applied to the printing industry-how to print and what to print. Because they represent the future development trend of the printing industry, they have attracted much attention.

This issue of "Printing Weekly" focuses on nanotechnology and printed electronics, and hopes that printing companies will pay more attention to new applications, adopt new technologies, and flexibly use "technical weapons" to participate in market competition.

"Using nano-plate-making technology, the photosensitive processing process is reduced, the traditional developer is not used, and the production is more environmentally friendly; the original imposition process is also gone, which saves labor and costs." Beijing Xinhai Jinao Offset Printing Co., Ltd. It is a book and printing company in Miyun County, Beijing. When the reporter asked about the experience of using nano-platemaking technology, Wang Dejun, the deputy general manager of production, told the reporter.

As a rising technology in the 1980s, nanotechnology has huge economic potential. In recent years, nanotechnology has gradually entered the vision of printing people. It opens a green door, allowing printing people to see the broad prospects of the printing industry in the new era.

Nanotechnology has the potential to promote economic growth

Talking about "Made in China", the cover of the first issue of Time Magazine in 2012 was shocking: the floating mobile phone screen showed the pattern of a five-star red flag, and the uncovered circuit board of the mobile phone was crowded with workers and braved the thick The factory chimney of the smoke vividly reflects the two cruxes of China's economic development-relying on cheap labor and causing serious environmental pollution.

In recent years, China has paid more and more attention to transforming the economic growth mode. The “Decision of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on Several Major Issues of Comprehensively Deepening Reform” deliberated and passed by the Third Plenary Session of the Eighteenth Central Committee of the Communist Party of China pointed out: “Improve the evaluation system for development achievements, correct the bias of assessing political performance based solely on economic growth, increase resource consumption, The weights of indicators such as environmental damage, ecological benefits, overcapacity, technological innovation, safe production, and newly added debt, pay more attention to labor employment, residents' income, social security, and people's health. "

The country pays more attention to driving economic development with scientific and technological progress. At present, the world has seen the huge potential of nanotechnology research to promote economic growth. It is understood that China has the National Nano Major Scientific Research Program, the National Key Basic Research and Development Program (973 Program), the National High Technology Research and Development Program (863 Program), the National Natural Science Foundation of China and the Chinese Academy of Sciences research projects to support basic research in nanotechnology And applied technology research.

The whole industry green chain from plate making

"The printing industry uses CTP (Computer Direct Platemaking), which is a significant improvement compared to CTF (Computer Direct Filmmaking), and has reduced some links. Now some companies have made another step forward in energy conservation and environmental protection through the use of nanoplate materials." Yang Bin, chairman of Beijing Peking University Founder Electronics Co., Ltd., commented to reporters.

Focusing on the preparation of nanomaterials and promoting green printing, Beijing Zhongkona New Printing Technology Co., Ltd. started with green platemaking, but it did not stop with green platemaking. Song Yanlin, a researcher at the Institute of Chemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the new founder of Zhongkona, told reporters: "From pre-press to printing to post-press, the entire industrial chain has worthy improvements. We use nano-platemaking technology to make platemaking without exposure and chemical development. The most environmentally friendly plate-making method; it also solves the problem of surface energy matching between water-based inks and different substrates through the development of nano-green inks, which can reduce pollution caused by ink solvents; in the preparation of plate bases, traditional electrolysis is abandoned through nano-coating Oxidation is a process of high energy consumption and high pollution. "

Zhong Kona successfully developed a nano-coating technology to replace the high-pollution electrolytic oxidation process for the preparation of printed aluminum bases. Jia Zhimei, director of the new product department of Zhongkona, told reporters that the nano-coated substrate per square meter can reduce the discharge of about 40 liters of wastewater compared with the traditional process. Counting it, printing a 160-page color book with nano-green plate-making technology can reduce Drain more than 3000 liters of polluted wastewater.

The use of nano-materials from green platemaking to the greening of the entire industrial chain, in Song Yanlin's words, is by changing the material "changed the principle, changed the way of playing, that is, changed the production method." The large surface energy of nanomaterials makes it easy to control lipophilicity and hydrophilicity, thus changing the imaging principle. Only through technological disruption through new materials can we truly open up the development path of China's printing industry with its own advantages.

Want to subvert the tradition must innovate business model

New technologies will disrupt traditional industries, and they will face huge resistance at first. Song Yanlin used "growing children" and "giants" to compare nanotechnology and traditional technology. The national conditions of China's printing industry also make it more difficult to promote new technologies: China's 100,000 printing enterprises are mainly small and medium-sized enterprises, and only a few thousand enterprises above designated size. At present, small and medium-sized printing companies with book printing as their main business are in a state of meager profit, and it is very difficult for them to purchase plate-making machines separately for nanoplate-making.

In addition, despite the advantages of good environmental protection and low cost, nanotechnology also faces stability problems in the initial investment. In the promotion and use of new technologies, it is necessary to adapt to different climatic conditions and printing equipment, and all problems need to be exposed. However, these risks cannot be borne by the customer when using the product.

Therefore, Zhong Kona started to seek innovative business models. In recent years, the government has paid more and more attention to environmental protection. At the same time, many regions have corresponding printing industry gathering areas. Zhongkona ’s new idea is to directly transform the company into a service company and establish a platemaking center to provide printing materials to printing companies. It can solve the entry threshold problem for small and medium-sized printing enterprises, and can also solve the stability problem of product use. According to Jia Zhimei, the plate-making center in Huairou District of Beijing has been put into operation, and the Miyun plate-making center is also under construction.

New technologies need to be constantly tested

Speaking of nano-printing, Lanta, which released nano-image printing machines at the drupa exhibition in 2012, cannot but mention it. "The father of digital printing" Landa's nano-printing technology aims to create a new technology between offset printing and digital printing. However, in the process of product maturity, there will be a series of problems such as the difficulty of controlling the change of ink droplets, the adhesion of the blanket, and the printing accuracy. The latest news is that, in order to approach the quality of offset printing, Landa has delayed the launch of printing presses until the end of 2014.

Song Yanlin said that the concept of "nano printing" was first proposed in China. He was very happy to see an influential company like Landa, agreeing that nano-printing will affect the printing industry. From the beginning of research and development in 2004 to the scale promotion of this year, China's nano-printing related technologies have also experienced nearly ten years of running-in, and they still need to continue to develop and improve in the future.

In terms of experiments, proving the advantages of nanotechnology from the most basic point, line, and surface formation angles is the prerequisite for the development of the nanoprinting industry. There are many technical difficulties. For example, when a drop of coffee dries on a solid surface, instead of forming uniform spots, it forms an enlarged ring. This is called the "coffee ring effect" and is an international problem faced by nano-printing. At present, the relevant research of the Institute of Chemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences has solved this problem. The ink droplets of 1.6 microns or even nanometers are printed by the 25-micron orifice printer, which exceeds the human visual resolution limit. For printing, there is no problem with accuracy.

Turning technology into products is one stage, and turning products into commodities is another stage. "Technology focuses on innovation, products focus on stability, and commodities focus on cost performance. Technically advanced products may not necessarily become good commodities. Therefore, the combination of innovative R & D and the market still needs to be strengthened," said Song Yanlin.

At present, Beijing Daily Newspaper Group Printing Center, Beijing Zhongke Printing Company, Dongguan Jinbei Printing Company, Guangxi Normal University Press, as well as Peking University Founder Electronics Company, Beijing Printing Institute and many other enterprises and research forces are in varying degrees with the Chinese Academy of Sciences The Institute of Chemistry or Sino-Kona newly cooperated to participate in the R & D and industrialization of nano-printing.

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