Gravure Printing

Gravure printing is a widely-used high quality, fast speed printing technique e.g. for magazine printing. It utilizes engraved cells on a printing plate or cylinder to transfer the ink to the substrate.

https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/147354/601833/Gravure+Printing.png/07d6e6ef-997d-476d-b462-5a97b9ed2bc8?t=1585738648000
Schematic of the Gravure printing process and Photograph (left) and microscopic image (right) of engraved cells.

Key features

  • Engraved elements on gravure cylinder.
  • Mass-printing technique
  • High variety of low viscosity inks can be used (UV, solvent, waterbased etc.)
  • Web speed ≤ 100 m/min
  • Resolution ≤ 355 dpi, ≥ 10μm
  • Film thickness: 0.02 – 8 μm

Empa's gravure cylinder

Empa's gravure cylinder is specially designed for printing very fine details and structures required for printed electronics (down to 9 Micrometer). It is also has the capability to print very thin layers of functional inks.
https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/147354/601833/Gravure+Examples.png/cc13c1e8-c1db-46c9-902f-57ce284185df?t=1585738807000
1 Printed Ag grids for use as transparent electrodes (https://doi.org/10.1007/s00170-019-03835-7). 2 Printed dot structure of polymeric material on PET foil. 3 Printed Ag current collector on CIGS solar cells. 4 Flexible and transparent electrode: A gravure printed conductive Silver grid and busbar on PET foil.
https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/147354/601833/Gravure+Printed+Ag.png/9b1568e0-d454-423b-ae5d-e82750b9d401?t=1585738903000
Circuit with a glue-bonded SMD-LED to prove conductivity of the gravure printed nano-silver ink.

Labratester

The CCC is also home to a small lab gravure printer for ink testing on flexible A5-sized substrates. Here, gravure plates are used, which allow a very fast workflow. A gravure plate with various cell parameters (e.g. depth, size) as well as a gravure plate with very fine structures are available.

https://sasp20.empa.ch/documents/147354/601833/CAM02434_570px.jpg/8d8c52f2-be30-42d9-91bd-25aa8016c7db?t=1466061754000
Labratester