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Updated 13 March 2010

U-Board – A “U”-shaped boxboard configuration of a body and two ends or sides scored to provide rigidity and facilitate overwrapping of product with flexible packaging material.

UCA (Under Colour Addition) – A technique that increases the saturation and vibrancy of an image by adding cyan, magenta, and yellow inks to areas where a lot of black ink is printing. The result is more vibrancy, but higher total ink coverage.

UCC – Uniform Code Council, the American organisation that administers the UPC system in North America.

UCR (Under Colour Removal) – Removing excessive densities of cyan, magenta, and yellow in neutral shadow areas to allow for more press controllability without plugging up the shadows.

UFP Technologies Inc

UGRA Wedge – Special filmstrip control device that is about 1 inch by 6 inches in size and contains test targets for controlling accurate film exposures on contacts and printing plates. UGRA is a graphic art research association located in Switzerland.

UHP – ultra high pressure, a.k.a HPP High Pressure Processing.

UHSE – ultra-high surface energy.


Ultra-high surface energy (UHSE)

Ultrasonic Cleaning – Vibrational frequencies slightly higher than those audible; used to agitate immersion cleaning tanks. Microbubble formation in the liquid accelerates dislodgement of soils.

Ultra-sonic technology (beer) –

Ultraviolet (UV) Coatings – UV coatings are cured, or dried, by exposing the coating to ultraviolet radiation. These coatings offer excellent gloss, chemical and rub resistance.

Ultraviolet (UV) Inks – (1) Solventless printing inks which incorporate liquid photopolymers that release free radicals on exposure to large doses of ultraviolet light. The radicals cause the ends to polymerize into a dry resin, eliminating the need for drying time. (2) UV inks are similar to Electron Beam inks. When exposed to UV light, the ink is polymerized, thus cured. UV inks/coatings typically have high gloss and good resistance.

Uncoated Groundwood – Paper other than newsprint made with large portions of mechanical pulp.

Uncoated Paper – Paper that has not been coated with clay. Also called offset paper.

Under Correction – Insufficient colour correction made to compensate for the hue errors of process inks. The result is a reproduction that appears to have one or all hues contaminated with the wrong colour. The reproduction will print to dark; the colours will appear to warm or dirty. Under correction is the opposite of over correction.

Undercolour Addition – A technique that is used to add cyan, magenta and yellow printing dots in dark neutral areas in the reproduction.

Undercolour Removal – Technique of making colour separations such that the amount of cyan, magenta and yellow ink is reduced in midtone and shadow areas while the amount of black is increased. Abbreviated UCR.

Under-run – Production of fewer copies than ordered. See over run.

Undertone – The colour of a thin film of an ink on a white background. The appearance of an ink when viewed by light transmitted through the film. The undertone of a transparent ink approximates its printing tone on white paper.

Uniform Colour Space – A 3-dimensional colour space in which all pairs of colours that are judged to be equally different are separated by nearly equal distances.

Unit-of-use packaging – Packaging designed to be taken one dose at a time, often in a blister pack, to prevent the rest of the medication from being contaminated, or to easily keep track of how many have been taken and how many remain. This makes patient compliance easier.

Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) – A system to protect unique work from reproducing without knowledge from the originator. To qualify, one must register their work and publish a (c) indicating registration.

Universal Product Code (UPC) – A computerized method of registering sales information on products identified by the system. Also known as “bar code”. One of the world’s best-known symbols, the UPC code, developed by GS1 US, Lawrenceville, NJ, comprises a row of 59 machine-readable black and white bars and 12 human-readable digits. Both the bars and the digits convey the same information: the identity of a specific product and its manufacturer. Originally developed to help supermarkets speed up the checkout process, the first live use of a UPC took place in a Marsh Supermarkets store in Troy, OH, on June 26, 1974, when a cashier scanned a package of Wrigley’s gum. The code ushered in extraordinary economic and productivity gains for shoppers, retailers and manufacturers alike, with estimated annual cost savings of $17 billion in the grocery sector alone, according to one study. The information, read by the electronic scanners, is instantly fed into a computer which provides pricing information and also accumulates inventory data and synthesizes sales analysis data.


Unbleached pulp – Pulp of natural colour.

Uncoated board – Board not treated as in coated board, although it may have a light application of surface size.

Unglazed (UG) – Uncalendered paper.

Uniformity – For converters, printers, and end-users, uniformity means that from roll to roll, sheet to sheet, and within rolls and sheets, products are predictable, performing the same way time after time after time.


Unistraw system

Unit dose – Delivering medication in packaging that contains separate doses. E.g., a blister package for an anti-histamine of the size the patient is to take every 12 hours would have each dose is in a separate compartment in the blister pack.

Universal Can Company

Unlined – (1) A closure with no special sealing features and no liner.
Unlined chipboard. (2) A material made entirely from waste paper in one or more piles. The quality can vary significantly depending on the choice of waste paper and the manufacturing process.

Unsharp Masking – The process of electronically evaluating an original to determine where image edges appear. By reducing the density on the light side of an edge, the apparent edge contrast and the picture detail in the reproduction are increased through the separation filters of a colour.

Up – Term to indicate multiple copies of one image printed in one impression on a single sheet. “Two up” or “three up” means printing the identical piece twice or three times on each sheet.

UPC – Universal Product Code – a.k.a. Barcode – A pattern of bars and spaces (which can be electronically read by a scanner) applied to a product container for use in implementing the Universal Product Code system. The symbol contains a numeric code identifying both the manufacturer and product. See for more information: Universal Product Code.

Urea – The generic name for urea-formaldehyde – the thermosetting compound that is used to mould light-coloured closures.

Use by date – Use by Nov. 2009, means do not use this product after 31st October 2009.

USEPA – The United States Environmental Protection Agency. USEPA is a governmental arm responsible for regulating environmental issues on land, waterways, and air.

User – Natural or legal person, individual or organisation with the responsibility for making use of the product  (ref. ISO 11607 – 2003(E)).

Utilization rate – Amount of waste paper raw material used to make a certain amount of paper (usually in %).

UVA: UV Absorbers, a group of additives which protect organic materials by absorbing the UV radiation.

UV Barriers – A class of UVAs which totally block UV light.

UV-blocking film

UV Coating – A clear rapid drying liquid, containing monomers and spread over the paper like ink and then cured instantly with ultraviolet light. It can be a gloss or dull coating, and can be used as a spot covering to accent a particular image on the sheet or as an overall (flood) coating. UV coating gives more protection and sheen than either varnish or aqueous coating. Since it is cured with light and not heat, no solvents enter the atmosphere. However, it is more difficult to recycle than the other coatings.
UV coating is applied as a separate finishing operation as a flood coating or (applied by screen printing) as a spot coating. This thick coating may crack when scored or folded.

UV ink

UV light-triggering system

UV Printing – Printing with ultraviolet inks.

UV Radiation – The range of electromagnetic radiation from 150-400nm.  In solar radiation, there is a significant amount only over 250nm.

UV Resistance – The resistance to the fading of colours under direct sunlight.

UV-sensitive ink

UV Stabilizer – A chemical compound additive to a thermoplastic resin which selectively absorbs U-V rays.

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