| Toshiba's e-blue(TM) Decolorable Toner and
Erasing Machine Set to Boost Paper Recycling at Offices in Japan
2 December, 2003
Tokyo -- Toshiba Corporation today announced that it would start sales and marketing in Japan of a decolorable printing ink that is rendered invisible by heat treatment, allowing companies to reuse paper, to cut office waste and to reduce business costs. The products in the e-blueTM range include decolorable toner, an erasing machine, a photoconductor unit and decolorable ink pen. Sales and marketing of the e-blueTM products will start on December 8.
Paper disposal is a pressing environmental issue. In Japan, waste paper accounts for as much as 40 percent of office waste, and despite efforts to collect paper for recycling, cost and quality degradation limit the recycling rate to approximately 60 percent. Toshiba targeted development of a highly efficient paper-reuse system as an essential approach to environmental preservation, and developed a prototype decolorable ink in September 1998. The company has subsequently directed resources to refinement of the system, culminating in the launch of e-blueTM.
Toshibas e-blueTM realizes efficient, cost-effective reuse of the huge volumes of paper generated in offices. The essence of the product range is an innovative ink that is entirely free of carbon and that decolors when exposed to a high level of heat. The toner prints words and images on standard plain paper in blue to distinguish it from carbon-black-based toner. Toshiba will target initial sales of e-blueTM at corporate clients who use laser printers and standard black toner, and plans to extend the application of e-blueTM products in the near future to include copy machines and large-scale, industrial-use printing.
Toshiba will continue to support environmental protection by introducing eco-friendly products like e-blueTM, and by promoting eco-businesses as a new growth area within the companys social infrastructure business domain.
Full details of e-blueTM and its decoloring process will be presented at EcoProducts 2003, to be held at Tokyo Big Site from December 11 to 13.
The e-blueTM range
Basic Principal of Decoloration
Toshiba's decolorable toner essentially reverses the reaction that occurs in the development process during printing on thermal paper. In thermal printing, the paper is coated with leuco dye and capsulized phenolic developer. Application of heat or pressure breaks the capsule, and the dye and developer bond to form printed images.
Toshiba's e-blueTM decolorable toner contains the developer and the dye, along with a decoloring reagent. The chemical bonding of the dye and developer breaks down at temperatures around 140C(284F), which are generated during heat treatment by the erasing machine. The detached developer bonds with the decoloring reagent, the dye and developer separate, and printed images are erased. Bonding of the developer and decoloring reagent stabilizes the decoloring.
Increasing reuse of paper with e-blueTM products
|Information in the press releases, including product prices and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current on the date of the press announcement,but is subject to change without prior notice.|