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Re: Reuse of Dewatered Ink Solids

Hi, Bonnie. I have a answer to your question. It means changing treatment
system technology however. I work with a company that makes membrane filter
based treatment systems. They have experience with systems for flexographic
washwater. By separating the particles and large molecules from the small
molecules (such as water) in a membrane filter, the ink solids (pigment and
resins) and some of the co-solvents, anti-foaming agents, adhesion
enhancers and other additives are concentrated for reuse (we call it a
recycle system, not a treatment system). In the flexo newspaper industry,
this has become standard technology. The key is to reuse these ink
components in the black ink where the various colors, when mixed become
very dark and are "hidden" (they use a lot of black ink in the newspaper
industry). If your client does not use much black ink, you've still
concentrated valuable components (some ink pigments cost more than $6 per
pound). Perhaps your client's ink manufacturer would be interested in it.
Or, perhaps, there is another flexographic printer in the area that does
use a lot of black water based ink-the Louisville Courier does, the Akron
Beacon-Journal does, the Pittsburgh Post does among others.

I would be happy to talk to your client and put them in touch with the
recycle system's manufacturer. Call me or have your client call me.


Warren J. Weaver
227 W. Market St.
York, PA 17401

ph 717-848-6669
cell ph 717-873-9898
fax 717-854-0087
web site www.penntap.psu.edu/

At  4:44 PM 7/15/97 -0700, Bonnie Pray wrote:
>We are working with a plastics printing company that has flexographic
>printing operations.  They use all water-based inks.  Press cleanups are
>conducted with a water/soap solution.  The spent wash water is sent to a
>wastewater treatment system where it is coagulated using aluminum
>chloride solution.  Lime solution is also added to the wastewater to
>adjust pH.  The wastewater then goes through a plate and frame filter
>press where solids are removed.  My assumption is that most of the solids
>consist of ink pigments.  Currently, these solids are landfilled.
>Does anyone have suggestions to reduce or eliminate this waste stream?
> Can the ink pigments be recovered?  FYI - we are already addressing
>their product scheduling practices to reduce the number of press
>changeovers, this should reduce the amount of wastewater to some extent.
>Thanks for any input.
>Bonnie L. Pray
>Institute of Advanced Manufacturing Sciences
>Cincinnati, OH
>(513) 948-2015