TIJ (thermal inkjet) is challenging TT (thermal transfer) as the coding technology of choice for web-based materials, says Richard Pether, Director at coding specialist Rotech Machines.

When the first TTO (thermal transfer overprinting) system hit the market in 1992, it was heralded as a breakthrough in flexible film coding. It quickly replaced hot foil coding as the dominant coding technology for web-based materials, as it eliminates the margin for operator error, produces crisp codes, uses less ribbon, prints continuously and – because it is digital rather than analogue – enables real time coding.

All of these benefits still hold true today, only the coding landscape has changed with the entrance of another option: TIJ. And this cost-effective cartridge-based technology is now emerging as a serious rival to TT on many flexible packaging applications.