Photonic printing solutions firm DataLase has introduced solvent-based functional coatings for flexible packaging printers.

The launch will expand the company’s flexographic printing range with gravure printing applications, as well as strengthen its position in the flexible packaging sector globally.

Designed for use with CO2 lasers, the solvent-based coatings allow printers to deliver high-contrast, durable, black-on-white codes for a range of film and foil substrates.

They are suitable for pharma industry packaging and can be used as an alternative option to continuous inkjet (CIJ) and laser ablation of variable data coding.

Printers will have to lay down the DataLase laser-reactive coating as a patch on to a film or foil.

The patch used in the process can be surface or reverse printed under a barrier laminate layer, allowing it to offer anti-counterfeit tamper-proof coding.

The CO2 laser beam is installed in the production process at the point where the variable data is to be applied to the product.

“Hanging from a laser ablation process to the DataLase solution can increase throughput by up to 30%.”

The patch is activated by exposing it to the CO2 laser beam and printing variable data to produce machine-readable tamper-proof codes for applications that require 100% product traceability.

DataLase product manager Adam Slack said: “DataLase coding and marking solutions go beyond the capability of standard CIJ or laser ablation processes by allowing manufacturers to benefit from increased productivity, superior traceability and the elimination of inks and solvents from their production halls.

“Typically, changing from a laser ablation process to the DataLase solution can increase throughput by up to 30%, depending on the application.

“Faster coding of machine-readable, black-on-white codes means increased throughput, less servicing and maintenance, and fully compliant product packaging.”

In January, DataLase introduced the WBF 6101 water-based flexo coating for corrugated packaging in a move to assist brands with sustainable packaging goals.