Incorporating LED Light-Curing Systems into Your Process
LED light-curing systems have many environmentally friendly advantages over traditional broad-spectrum UV/Visible light-curing systems, including lower operating costs, consistent cures, and longer life. Yet, it's important to consider these 4 recommendations before integrating them into your manufacturing process.
* Be mindful of the ambient temperature surrounding the device. Any elevated temperatures will put an increased burden on the cooling system. In particular, temperatures above 40°C will have adverse effects on lifetime expectations. In extreme cases, consider the use of additional cooling fans in the curing area or fixtures to ensure temperatures are minimized.
* Some products, such as the BlueWave® LED Flood-Curing System and the BlueWave® MX-150 Spot-Curing System utilize a forced air convection cooling system. In order for the system to work efficiently, the fans need access to room-temperature air on the intake vents, and proper exhaust of the heated air on exit vents so that the air is not re-entrained into the intake vents. Maintain 150 mm of spacing around vents to promote proper cooling. In addition, if the device is placed within a secondary enclosure, ensure the enclosure has a source of fresh air and the means to sufficiently exhaust heated air.
* Be aware of reflective surfaces in the active cure area. In some cases where an excessive amount of light is reflected directly back onto the emission optic, it will cause unnecessary thermal rise of the optics and LED. In rare cases, this can damage the optic and affect energy emissions. One way to mitigate this is to take advantage of the LED instant on/off control and cycle the LED off when not actively curing a part. Do not leave the LED continuously running when not in use. Another mitigating option is the use of non-reflective materials/colors for fixtures around the curing area.
* Applications should not be designed around running the device at 100% intensity setting. Selection of the appropriate product can optimize applications so that required operating intensity levels will enhance and extend LED life. This not only ensures the device operates at optimal settings, but also ensures the process can be modified over time to account for the slow degradation of the curing system.
Dymax offers a wide range of products with various power and performance levels. When used within recommended operating conditions, customers can achieve or exceed advertised LED lifetime expectancies.
Contact our Application Engineering team to help you choose the right equipment for your process.