A novel method, the Self-Cleaning Gravure (SGC) is proposed to provide a new solution for ink removal from gravure grooves for gravure cleaning, as well as a novel printing method. In conventional gravure offset printing, especially with high loads of solid particles and narrow gravure grooves, there is a severe problem encountered with gravure groove blocking. Such inks are usually used to create shiny coatings in the graphic printing industry, and in conductor printing in the electronics industry. Conventional gravure groove cleaning methods are insufficient for the narrow gravure grooves, especially when silver particle containing inks are causing the blockage. This blocking of ink is initiated at the bottom of the gravure grooves. The basic idea of the proposed solution is to introduce a new solvent, some other liquid, or gas into the bottom of the gravure grooves where it is most needed. This may be accomplished by creating a porous layer or channels under the created pattern. The method makes possible more efficient ink removal from the grooves of the modified gravure compared to those of a conventional gravure. It also allows ink to be brought to its surface from below which exhibits gravure of any shape to be used as the direct or indirect printing surface.
Marko Pudas, Juha Hagberg, Seppo Leppävuori, "The Self-Cleaning Gravure (SCG), A Solution for Gravure Groove Blocking and a Novel Printing Method" in Journal of Imaging Science and Technology, 2004, pp 375 - 381, https://doi.org/10.2352/J.ImagingSci.Technol.2004.48.4.art00014