The Plasma-Jet® corona treating system from Corotec Corporation uses an electrical discharge (corona) to selectively increase the surface wettability of molded and extruded plastic parts prior to the application of labels, nomenclature, or graphics. It can treat multiple surfaces and difficult geometries consistently and conveniently, with superior one-pass coverage on extruded parts, pipe and tubing, profile extrusions, and molded parts.
“The Plasma-Jet is being used successfully across the plastics industry in a variety of applications,” said Bruce Stobbe, president of Corotec Corporation. “Recent applications of the Plasma-Jet include injection-molded toothbrush handles, a wide variety of automotive parts, blow-molded bottles, and extruded tubing and catheters.”
The Corotec Plasma-Jet provides improved bonding of inks, adhesives and coatings, with greater application flexibility, surface coverage, and speed, especially for parts subjected to harsh environments such as exposure to chemicals. The Plasma-Jet system is easily configured to the process, regardless of whether direct printing, hot stamping, pad printing, adhesive coating, adhesive bonding, painting, or laminating techniques are utilized. This type of treatment is crucial for manufacturers who use water-based or UV-curable inks, which demand higher surface energy levels than their solvent-based predecessors.
The Plasma-Jet corona treatment system offers superior bonding results, without the hazards of older methods such as open flame-treatment, chemical surface preparation, or sanding techniques. It does not involve the use of hazardous gases, open flames, combustion by-products, or heat generation of flame treatments. Because the Plasma-Jet generates very little heat, sensitive materials such as light films can be treated without distortion.
The Plasma-Jet can be easily configured to the production environment since it can accommodate various line speeds, treatment widths, and material types. It can be used as a portable unit, or it can be permanently affixed in a central location. The discharge heads from one to four depending on model can be located up to 10 feet or more away from the power unit, and they are connected with just one cord to streamline setup.
A new option recently made available on the Plasma-Jet system is the ceramic discharge head. Ceramic discharge heads are advantageous because they eliminate arc tracking due to high voltage and contamination, and they do not degrade due to heat and ozone. The end result is less maintenance and less downtime.
Three-dimensional plastic parts can be easily covered by positioning the heads where necessary. For example, two heads can be positioned on opposite sides of a catheter or IV tubing for pre-treatment. This will greatly increase the bonding strength of adhesives when the tubing is either connected or terminated.
In addition to Plasma-Jet systems, Corotec designs and manufactures a complete line of standard and custom corona discharge surface treating equipment for narrow-web and wide-web applications, systems for controlled atmosphere testing, ozone generators for coating and laminating processes, and other advanced applications.