Ink Additives - Plasticizers

The so-called plasticizer is able to increase the plastic polymer material assistant.They are generally high-boiling, less volatile liquids or low-melting solids that do not react with polymers.The molecular structure of plasticizer contains polar parts (such as ester group, chlorine, benzene ring, etc.) and non-polar parts (mainly longer alkanes).When they are mixed with polar polymer materials such as polyvinyl chloride at a higher temperature, the molecular movement becomes intense. Plasticizer molecules penetrate into the molecular chain of the polymer and form a uniform and stable system through mutual attraction of polar parts.Even when the temperature drops, the plasticizer's molecules are still able to remain in the polymer's molecular chains. Its longer non-polar alkanes impede the proximity of the polymer's molecular chains, greatly reducing the gravitational attraction (van der Waals force) between the chains and making the thermal movement of the molecular chains easier.Macroscopically, polymers become soft and plastic.

From the concept of solvent: plasticizer can be regarded as a so-called "permanent" solvent.Because the solvent is volatile, relatively speaking, plasticizer is not volatile.One of the most important functions of solvent is release, while one of the most important functions of plasticizer is retention.

Plasticizers are mostly used in the plastics industry to increase the softness of plastics for processing.If plastic plasticizer "run" away, plastic will lose softness and become hard, brittle or even broken, destroyed.Cellophane, as it is known, also contains plasticizer.

Inks using plasticizer, can make the film soft, but also improve the substrate adhesion.If a nitrate fiber as a binding solvent ink, printed on the advanced calendar paper, dry film after rubbing or bending, easy to fall from the paper.If you add 3% of dibutyl phthalate in the ink, you can increase the ink adhesion, dry ink film is not easy to drop.

In solvent - based inks using plasticizer, plasticizer stay in the ink film and slowly evaporate at room temperature, or to move around.If printing immediately after the application, you can use in the ink faster plasticizer, such as dimethyl diformate than dibutyl phthalate evaporation fast.Determination of evaporation pressure at room temperature is slow and difficult.Therefore, boiling point is commonly used to study the volatility of plasticizer, but the accuracy is very poor.

Oily ink film so soft, because vegetable oils are composed mainly of fatty acid glycerides, and all vegetable oils contain non-oxidizing components, which are not oxidized components are actually softeners, their role and plasticizer.The table below indicates the non-oxidizing composition of various vegetable oils.

Product name

Non-oxidizing composition (%)

Oil gas mass.


Cotton seed oil


Bean oil


The hemp oil


Tung oil


Austria's tin fuel


In color printing, if the first color (such as yellow), after a long time before printing the second color or the last color (such as black), it may not be printed, this is because the ink film in front of the dry too much, occurred crystal (glass), is the combination of ink film is not strong.If you add some castor oil to the first few colors, you might be able to overcome this.But should pay attention to, add the amount to be appropriate, such as adding too much, it will lead to ink film is too soft, prints do not do (or dry slowly), sticky, and may be in the accumulation of a sticky problem.Printing plastic film, such as easy to fold and wrinkle material elbow, in the ink with some plasticizer is beneficial.

Choose plasticizer, must pay attention to the following points: and ink system has a good compatibility.Good durability, durability is a comprehensive performance, and plasticizer volatility, resistance to extraction, migration and its own stability to heat and light.In addition, plasticizing efficiency, cold resistance, toxicity, color and odor must be considered.

Plasticizers are classified in two ways.One is according to the size of its compatibility mainly plasticizer, auxiliary plasticizer and increment agent (compatibility worst) three categories.One is classified according to its chemical structure. The main chemical categories of plasticizers are:

1.Phthalates.This is the main plasticizer, yield plasticizer total four-fifths.Their properties are comprehensive, widely used, most used as main plasticizer.The most important variety is dioctyl phthalate - DOP.The second is dibutyl phthalate - DBP and diisodecyl phthalate - DIDP.

2.Aliphatic dibasic esters.These include adipate, azelate, and sebacate, which are mainly used as auxiliary plasticizers for cold tolerance and are often combined with phthalates.The most commonly used varieties are dioctyl adipate (DOA) and dioctyl sebacate (DOS).

3.Phosphates.Compatibility is good, can make advocate plasticizer is used, but general cold resistance is poor (besides the individual aliphatic group ester such as phosphoric acid trioctyl ester outside kind), toxicity is bigger.The main varieties are trimethylphosphate (TGP) and triphenyl phosphate (TPP).

4.Epoxy esters.Mainly used as an auxiliary plasticizer for products requiring strong weather resistance.Commonly used varieties are epoxy soybean oil, epoxy stearic acid octanol (ED3) and so on.

5.Polyester class.Mainly is adipic acid, sebacic acid and other aliphatic dibasic acid with diethylene glycol, propylene glycol, butanediol and other diol condensation polymerization of low molecular weight polyester.Usually used with phthalates.

6.Phenyl alkyl sulfonate.Compatibility is good, can be used as the main plasticizer, usually also with phthalate esters, poor cold resistance.

7.Chlorine-containing plasticizer.The main content of chlorine in 40-50% chlorinated paraffin.Low cost, but poor compatibility, can only be used as an auxiliary plasticizer.

8.Polyol esters.Including pentaerythritol ester, pentaerythritol ester and other heat resistant plasticizer and glycol, propylene glycol, diol fatty acid ester type cold resistant plasticizer.They are all auxiliary plasticizers.

9.Triphenyl esters.This kind of plasticizer has excellent heat resistance and durability.

10.The other.In addition to the above, it is important to note that citrate agents, parabens, non-toxic plasticizers;Benzoic acid ester pollution - resistant plasticizer, N - alkyl substituted fatty amide cold - resistant plasticizer.

In the ink and coatings industry, soft (liquid) resins can also be considered as plasticizers of hard resins.

Plasticizer in photogravure inks and flexure inks more applications, especially when plastic film.But use the right amount so you don't lose more than you gain.


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