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Words of Warning: A Look Inside Electromark

(July 2007) posted on Tue Jul 10, 2007

Electromark is a comany that made its name by capitalizing on an extremely important segment of the printing industry. Find out how the production of safety-related labels and signage propelled the company to prosperity.

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By Ben P. Rosenfield

In addition to the specialty equipment mentioned above, Electromark offers MetalPhoto processing, operates clean-room facilities for bar codes, and uses several types of computer-control-led equipment for metal fabrication. The company’s quality-assurance (QA) program complies with 10CFR50, which is required for vendors of safety-related items to nuclear-power facilities. Routine audits of Electromark’s QA program are conducted by the Nuclear Procurement Issues Committee.


Materials, processes, and products

Electromark makes its primary product lines available in polyester, vinyl, fiberglass, aluminum (standard and annealed), and stainless steel and uses several types of printing and finishing processes to produce its markings. They include screen, thermal, and photographic printing, laser etching, MetalPhoto (creating images on photographic anodized-aluminum sheets), hot stamping, anodizing, embossing and debossing, chemical and laser etching, and more. The company also formulates and mixes its own photoluminescent inks. Among Electromark’s many signs, labels, and tags are five grades of marking products:

Polyesters Label and tag stocks can be screen or thermally printed and are typically designed to protect legends, serial numbers, and bar codes. Staple products include 10-mil polyester tags with self-laminating flaps that are used to seal in the end user’s manually added data. They also can be provided with Electromark’s non-conductive Snap-Grommet.

FiberTec Electromark manufactures screen- or inkjet-printed images that are embedded in the center of a fiberglass and resin mixture. The image is then protected from chemicals, UV exposure, abrasion, and weathering for long outdoor durability. This solution is designed for those who need lightweight, vandal-resistant outdoor markings. FiberTec is also available in reflective and photoluminescent versions.

Aluminum These signs and tags are made of heavy-duty aluminum and designed for high durability. Graphical content is screen printed at resolutions up to 900 dpi, and numbers are applied by an embossing/stamping die. One-of-a-kind screen-printed and embossed panels are a signature product at Electromark. The enamel inks used on aluminum are baked at 400°F.

Porcelain Electromark calls this the ultimate tag. Graphical content—including legends, serial numbers, and bar codes—is screen or photographically printed at resolutions up to 1200 dpi with Electromark’s PhotoFrit material and process. These ceramic tags are built on a stainless-steel base. Electromark then fires ceramic or porcelain frit onto the stainless steel at 1500°F, and the resulting product resists solvents, UV degradation, high heat, and abrasion. Porcelain tags are typically hung or riveted to application surfaces.


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