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Printing, Labeling,and Marking

Originally Published MPMN November 2003

EQUIPMENT NEWS

Printing, Labeling, and Marking 
The D-I-D system from West Pharmaceutical Systems applies differentiating text and images to drug-container closures.

Printed Vial Closures Distinguish Products and Manufacturers

West Pharmaceutical Systems Inc., a producer of pharmaceutical-container closure systems, has developed a printing-based seal system that can be used to convey information and provide protection. The D-I-D decoration, identification, and differentiation system employs ink-jet printing and imaging to differentiate products and companies clearly. Users can label a vial closure with an identification of contents, a brand name, a dosage indication, or a characterization of the strength of the medicament. Non-human-readable UV ink can be used for lot and date coding. In addition, the innovative system has utility as a mechanism for protecting against drug counterfeiting. 

West Pharmaceutical Systems Inc., 101 Gordon Dr., Lionville, PA 19341.


Bar Code Label Design and Printing System Supports 21 CFR Part 11 Compliance

Compliance with the FDA electronic recordkeeping regulation can be achieved with EasyLabel 5 from 
Tharo Systems.

The new release of a software system for designing and printing labels and bar codes, available from Tharo Systems Inc., includes a collection of tools for 21 CFR Part 11 electronic recordkeeping compliance. The EasyLabel 5 Platinum bar code labeling and product identification system features new password and user options, logging options, and format choices that help a company to set up a compliant labeling system.

EasyLabel 5 offers several other additions designed to facilitate label generation and printing. The new EAN/UCC-128 wizard makes the creation of these codes a simple four-step process. By supporting Microsoft's ActiveX Data Objects, the software provides a fast, productive means of accessing numerous different data sources. 
A new database editor employs Microsoft's OLE DB to allow users to view and edit nearly any database from inside the system. 

Tharo Systems Inc., 2866 Nationwide Pky., Brunswick, OH 44212.


Pad- and Screen-Printing Machines Are Semiautomatic, Versatile 

A two-color pad printer from Impression Technology USA features 
sealed ink 
cups.

A full line of semiautomatic pad-printing and screen-printing equipment is available from Impression Technology USA, the North American distributor of machines manufactured by the Australian company Impression Technology Pty. Ltd. The TIC line comprises 45 models ranging from single-color tabletop machines to six-color floor models. Pictured is the Model TIC 183 SCDE two-color pad printer with sealed ink cups.

The distributor also carries all necessary supplies for the machines, which are all suitable for imprinting a wide 
variety of products, including medical devices. 

Impression Technology USA, 405 Commerce Ct., Vadnais Heights, MN 55127.


Hot-Foil Stamping Machines Provide Exact Images in Continuous Use

Economical hpdPrint hot-foil stampers from Griffin-Rutgers can 
be integrated easily into packaging and labeling lines.

A range of coding and marking systems using stamping foil is offered by distributor Griffin-Rutgers Company, Inc., to provide exact print images of high quality on almost all material substrates. The Metronic line of miniature, modular, compact, and cassette hpdPrint hot-foil stamping units are designed for continuous daily use. Featuring a high level of function, good reliability, and easy integration into form-fill-seal machines, labeling systems, and packaging machines, the systems operate simply and economically.

Print areas range from 10 ¥ 30 to 50 ¥ 80 mm. All printed images are immediately abrasion- and smudge-proof 
and resistant to environmental influences. The safe, emission-free color pigments can be used on delicate products.
The Metronic hot-foil stamping units have infinitely variable controls, electronic temperature control, adjustable time delay and impulse stop, and a secure cliché-locking system. They can be customized with a wide variety of options and accessories.
 
Griffin-Rutgers Company, Inc., 25 Trade Zone Ct., Ronkonkoma, NY 11779.


Thermal Printers Offer High Performance for Portable Applications

Choices abound with 
the new-generation MCP8000-series thermal printers from Martel Instruments.

A series of portable thermal printers from Martel Instruments provide reliable performance and a choice of communications interfaces and power sources that make them suitable for nearly every application requiring 
a compact printer. All models of the MCP8000-series printers are housed in an ABS plastic enclosure and incorporate a fixed-head print mechanism. They provide high-speed, high-resolution printing and quiet, maintenance-free operation. The highly reliable devices have applications in portable medical analyzers and industrial test equipment.

Communications interfaces available with the printers include cabled RS-232 or 3.3-V logic, a variety of infrared options, and wireless communication via Bluetooth. Nickel-metal hydride cells allow continual charging without memory effect. Other power choices are alkaline cells, external 5-V dc, and vehicle supply power.

Many different modes of printer operation are possible, including numerous character sets such as Aerial, Roman 8, and ECMA 94; print-density and current-consumption control; sleep mode; character scaling; and bar code printing. Any product feature can be customized to suit specific application requirements.

Martel Instruments, Stanelaw Way, Tanfield Lea Industrial Estate, Stanley, Co. Durham DH9 9XG, United Kingdom.


Rapid-Throughput Laser Coder Produces Permanent High-Resolution Marks

High-resolution permanent marks can be produced on a diverse range of materials with a laser coder offered by Weber Marking Systems Inc. The e-Solarmark vector laser coder is capable of marking as many as 1000 characters per second at product delivery speeds to 560 ft/min, and coding substrates as various as paper, paperboard, foils, plastics, glass, coated metal, and many other materials. The rugged laser system is well suited for both dynamic and static applications.

The e-Solarmark provides text as small as 0.020 in. high. It can also mark numerous bar code symbologies and eye-catching graphic images. A choice of lenses is available to deliver marking fields ranging in extent from 2.0 to 7.8 in. square.

The easy-to-install laser coder is essentially maintenance free and requires no consumables to effect product or package marking. It comes with its own controller and PC-based software. 

Weber Marking Systems Inc., 711 W. Algonquin Rd., Arlington Heights, IL 60005.

Ink-Based Code-Marking Machines Can Be Washed Down

Code-marking machines 
from Sprinter Marking can 
be constructed 
of corrosion-resistant components.
 

The complete line of automatic ink-based code-marking machines from Sprinter Marking Inc. is offered with washdown capability. Standard machines are modified by the addition of corrosion-resistant parts at nominal extra expense, eliminating the problem of rust in production environments requiring regular steam cleaning or sterilization of processing equipment.

Eight standard models of the code-marking machines are available, which can be fitted with extended-width or extended-stroke marking heads and are supplied as complete benchtop systems. The machines produce alphanumeric or symbol codes on porous or nonporous flat, stationary surfaces of paper, metal, or plastic. Inks that dry typically in 1 second or less can be changed easily owing to the quick-change design of the reservoir; all basic colors, including white, are available. The sealed ink system allows discontinuous operation with no fluctuation 
in the quality of impressions. The marking head also is easily removable, facilitating message changes.

Mountable in any orientation, the smooth operating systems range in weight from 4 to 18 oz and offer marking speeds of 150 to 350 codes 
per minute. The manufacturer supplies all basic, optional, and auxiliary equipment, along with supplies for normal code-marking operations. 

Sprinter Marking Inc., 1805 Chandlersville Rd., Zanesville, OH 43701.

Thermal-Printer Mechanisms Provide Reliable Long-Term Performance

FTP-607MCL103/383-series printer mechanisms from Fujitsu Components America offer high speed and long life.

A series of lightweight, compact 24-V high-speed thermal-printer mechanisms are offered by Fujitsu Components America Inc. for use in medical equipment, test and measurement systems, and other applications. The durable FTP-607MCL103/383 series includes 2- and 3-in. die-cast metal mechanisms and optional automatic cutters. Both printer mechanisms have a maximum variable print speed of 100 mm/sec and print at a resolution of 8 dots per millimeter.

The 2-in. printer measures 86.9 ¥ 33.1 ¥ 66.3 mm and weighs 240 g with mounted cutter. The 3-in. printer with cutter is 105.7 mm wide and weighs 275 g. Both accommodate paper stock 60-100 µm thick and feature the patented Easy-Load model platen-removal system that facilitates paper loading and printer maintenance. They are available with optional RS-232-C or parallel interface boards, as well as with a large-scale integrator for customers designing their own controller.

The series is well suited for applications requiring reliable performance over the long term. The mechanisms have a head life rated at 500 million pulses or 50 km of paper. They operate within the temperature range of 0° to 50°C. 

Fujitsu Components America Inc.
, 250 E. Caribbean Dr., Sunnyvale, CA 94089.


Digital Technology Facilitates Customized Short- to Medium-Run Labels

Customized digital labeling is available from Labeltronix. The company can produce labels for products of all shapes and sizes, with various designs and with customized content. The digital process enables high-quality custom labels with variable data to be generated quickly and efficiently in short to medium runs.

Labeltronix can produce just-in-time labels by means of 1-, 4-, and 6-color processes. Customers can change expiration dates, graphics, and other elements from their own computers. 

Labeltronix, 1097 N. Batavia St., Orange, CA 92867.


Copyright ©2003 Medical Product Manufacturing News

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