Gerber Ships World's First Cationic Ink Jet Printer

Imagine an ink jet printer that is capable of printing on virtually any surface and creates prints that are dry and ready to use immediately after printing. That's what Gerber's Solara ion printers do. Before you get too excited, let us mention that there is a good chance that you will get a sticker shock when you see the Solara's price tag. But then, it isn't really a consumer product - but a fascinating technology nevertheless.

The Solara ion can print on media that are up to 64" (1.6 m) wide and up to 1" (2.54 cm) thick. The printer covers up to 639 square feet per hour at a resolution of up to 1440 dpi, delivering "intense reds, greens, and blues" through its CMYK engine, according to the manufacturer. The prints are durable enough to be used outdoors and are promised to remain intact for up to three years. Gerber said that the Solara ion uses a piezo-based, drop-on-demand cationic UV curable printing technology.

Obviously, this isn't your average inkjet printer that you would use to print letters or tax returns. Gerber says that the device is targeted at printing applications such as billboards, fleet graphics or vehicle wraps. Both rigid and rollable media are supported by the device.

There wasn't any exact information on the price of this printer. Gerber, however, mentioned that the Solara ion offers better performance than any other wide format UV system on the market today for under $150,000.