Printing and functional surfaces

ITENE invests in technologies to develop new inks, printing methods and surface treatments which enhance printing outcomes and deliver new, readily implementable packaging functionalities.

These new ink and surface treatment technologies applied using sheet-to-sheet printing methods (screen printing, rotogravure, flexography or inkjet) or continuous printing systems for printing on flexible substrates on reels (rotogravure, flexography or inkjet) make it possible to produce printed structures on various kinds of substrates (rigid injected parts, paper, cardboard and flexible paper or plastic films) while minimising the environmental hazards and impact of their use and adding new functionalities to the packaging.

tintas conductivas
tintas flexografía
impresión electrónica

Ink formulation technologies

  • Sustainable bio-based inks for the printing industry

We formulate bio-based inks from bio-based varnishes, pigments, stabilisers and dispersants to achieve new colours which make the new sustainable packaging of the future more versatile and eye-catching while mitigating the environmental impact of the end packaging.

  • Indicator inks for smart labelling

We develop inks featuring colorimetric freshness, gas leakage and time-temperature indicators.

  • Conductive inks for printing connected components

We design conductive inks for use in printed electronic systems with a wide range of applications. These inks bring ease of manufacture, speed, cost reduction and versatility in terms of design and substrate use as they can be applied on flexible substrates.

We develop sensors connected to RFID and NFC antennas to report on moisture and temperature.

We can also add pressure and tactile sensors along with IoT and Industry 4.0 devices for enhanced product traceability.

Functional surface technologies

A material’s interaction with its environment is highly dependent on surface chemistry, surface free energy and the surface’s micro/nano structure. Materials sometimes do not exhibit the surface properties needed for certain applications. Hence, we harness material surface chemical modification to achieve particular properties in addition to those that were present in the starting materials.

tintas para impresión y superficies funcionales

At ITENE we have a wide range of surface treatment technologies for functionalisation or anchoring new molecules to a material’s surface by modifying the chemical composition and surface free energy, thus altering its interaction with the environment. This enables us to produce functional surfaces with features such as easy emptying, self-cleaning or easy cleaning and also stain-resistant, hydrophobic, superhydrophilic and barrier properties.

Meeting needs

  • Product quality control
  • Reducing food waste and associated costs (easy emptying).
  • Standing out on the shelf.
  • Printing systems such as screen printing, flexography, inkjet and rotogravure available at our facilities
  • How can I help you?

    Jesús Palenzuela

    Head of Printing technologies and Functional surfaces Unit

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