When Inkjet Press Filters are Inspiration for Face Masks

The Durst Group is producing face masks out of the materials used in their printers‘ filtration system. They are planning to make their know-how available to interested print service providers worldwide, after providing their employees with the equipment.

Durst, a manufacturer of digital printing and production technologies, is now producing „Community Masks“ at its demo centre in its Brixen, Italy headquarters. The masks will initially be produced for the employees of the Durst Group and its sister company Alupress. Afterwards the production capacity will be available for other companies. Durst will make the instructions to produce the „Community Masks“ available to interested print service providers worldwide.

A New Task for Common Inkjet Filter Technology

The „Community Masks“ produced by Durst have a filter membrane which has a high filtration efficiency and at the same time is characterized by very good air permeability. The „Community Masks“ are made in 3 layers, the polyester fleece textile materials are comfortable to wear and washable, the filter membrane can be disinfected with alcohol and reused.

Such filter systems normally take on some sort of cleaning function in the printing press to filter out microparticles in the ink supply systems so that print heads do not become clogged. In the first step, Durst laboratories subjected the filter membrane to a detailed effectiveness test but the verification of the measured values with an independent institute will follow.

„At the beginning of April, our printing technologies for the label and packaging industry were classified as systemically relevant and we were able to go back into partial operation,“

said Christoph Gamper, CEO and co-owner of Durst Group.

„In line with our „pixel-to-output“ strategy, production takes place digitally and fully automatically: in a web shop with a specially programmed editor, the masks can be individualized with graphics, images, texts, and our workflow software then sends the designed file directly to the printing machine and then the printed material is processed by a cutting system. The announcement of our initiative on social media alone has generated great demand and print service providers worldwide are adapting our concept and thus Durst technology for their productions.“

From The Idea to The People

VergissMeinNicht, a social cooperative in Bruneck, which gives young border crossers and people with disabilities, a place in the working world, has been acquired as a partner for processing and packaging of the masks. Under the motto of appreciation and added value, the specialized sewing shop finalizes the „Community Masks“ in a protected environment and also maintains principles of sustainability in packaging.

The „Community Masks“ can be personalized by end customers in the South Tyrol region and print runs of up to 300 masks can be ordered from the company Kunst & Dünger Solutions (maskenmacherei.online). For larger print runs or inquiries about the pixel-to-output software and hardware solutions for production, you have to contact Durst under protection@durst-group.com.

Durst explicitly points out that this is not a protective equipment according to VO (E) 2016/425 or a medical device according to the 93/42/EEC directive.

Do you know other exciting examples for adapting a printing technology for other purposes? We are looking forward for your suggestions.