Digital Coaters

Offset + Digital = Security Runs

Combined press runs in two platforms open door to new type of work
graphicartsonline.com, April 2008 – Technology Watch

Document Security Systems (DSS), an anti-counterfeiting firm in Rochester, NY, recently won a patent dispute in The Hague, Netherlands. The judgment will allow it to pursue an infringement action against currency printers for all the paper Euros currently in circulation. It turns out that companies printing the Euro may have violated a security process of DSS.

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An Epic Decision for UNT Printing Services

An Epic Decision

From Dots Magazine, January 2009

The University of North Texas recently installed an HP 5500 Indigo Press to eliminate the backlog on their HP 3050 press. “It’s working out really great” lauds Jimmy Friend, Director of Printing/Eagle Images/Mail Services at the Denton-based University. The new digital press is just one of the many changes taking place at the in-plant facility.

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Packaging Solutions for HP Indigo

BIRMINGHAM, U.K.—HP announced that print service providers (PSPs) operating HP Indigo digital presses have new business opportunities as a result of additional press features, partner finishing solutions, and expanded media capabilities for packaging production introduced at Ipex 2010.

HP is highlighting new end-to-end solutions that help label converters, packaging converters and other PSPs gain new business in the market for digitally printed labels and packaging. Industry research firm InfoTrends expects this market to grow from $1.95 billion in 2009 to $4.05 billion by 2014.

Using the expanded range of substrates compatible with HP Indigo 5500, 7500, and WS6000 digital presses, customers can add new applications for flexible packaging and folding cartons.

“Today, HP is extending the digital transformation from labels to flexible packaging and folding cartons,” said Alon Bar-Shany , vice president and general manager, Indigo division, HP. “With HP Indigo presses’ substrate versatility and our expanding network of partners, the value proposition for what our customers can offer in the packaging space has never been more compelling.

HP Indigo solutions integrate with new partner solutions for lean, just-in-time packaging manufacturing. HP’s new end-to-end packaging workflows also eliminate many of the makeready waste and platemaking environmental concerns associated with analog offset and flexographic printing.

More flexibility in flexible packaging

The HP Indigo WS6000 Digital Press is currently in use at converting facilities worldwide, creating flexible packaging jobs for food, beverage, beauty, and other products. At Ipex, HP announced new solutions for the WS6000 model in flexible packaging production.

HP is exhibiting the HP Indigo WS6000 printing on flexible packaging films as thin as 0.47 mils. When using common substrates, packaging converters also can use HP Indigo presses to print on the non-food-contact side of flexible packaging film for food and beverage products.

Starting with HP SmartStream Labels and Packaging Solutions, powered by EskoArtwork, the new flexible packaging workflow exhibited at Ipex includes laminating equipment from AB Graphic International, with compatible laminating films from ACPO Ltd. and D&K Group.

Several HP Indigo-certified flexible packaging substrates are available, including films from Exxon Mobil, Hanita Coatings, NORDENIA, and Walki, as well as newly certified substrates from Charter Films and Innovia Films.

“HP Indigo technology provides Foster Packaging with the print quality of gravure, without the minimum order quantities, lead time or set up waste and costs needed for gravure or flexographic printing,” said Joe Foster, president and managing director for Foster Packaging in Dunleer, Ireland, and Cape Town, South Africa. “Our company supplies exquisitely eye-catching flexible packaging for consumer packaged goods that are converted with specialized lamination and pouch-making equipment aligned to our HP Indigo WS6000. The response to our digital printing capabilities has been amazing, especially when customers see that we can serve them in quantities that meet their just-in-time supply chain needs.

Complete solutions for folding cartons

HP offers both sheetfed and web-fed digital presses engineered to support printing for folding carton substrates up to 18 points or 450 microns thick. Now, for the first time, HP Indigo sheetfed presses can pursue the folding carton market using intuitive, advanced HP SmartStream Labels and Packaging color management and color matching features.

HP has crafted a complete solution for folding carton production, working with HP Graphics Solutions Partners who are leading providers of finishing equipment for packaging, including AB Graphic, Brausse Group, Epic Products International, Kama GmbH, and Kompac Technologies. Users of HP Indigo sheetfed and web-fed presses can combine their printing operations with partner solutions to create a flexible, fast carton manufacturing infrastructure for offset-quality, just-in-time manufacturing.

Leading folding carton board suppliers also support the newly expanded HP Indigo offerings, with HP Indigo-certified substrates available from Iggesund Paperboard, M-real, Sappi Fine Paper, Stora Enso, Tulis Russell Papermakers, and more.

“For folding cartons, HP Indigo not only gives brand owners the ability to increase sell-through rates with different, compelling graphics, it enables mid-tier firms to compete more effectively on the shelf with high-quality, full-color graphics they might otherwise find too expensive to print using offset printing,” said Jay Dollries, president and chief executive officer of Innovative Labeling Solutions in Hamilton, Ohio.

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A Finshing Coat for Digital Print

From Graphic Arts Monthly, July 2005 – Techwatch

Epic Products International (www.epicproducts.com), with its lengthy record of successful products for offset litho – such as Delta Dampening and on-press coating systems – has developed a promising inline coater for digital press equipment. One need only look at what electronic printing has done, and is doing, for sales of small-format bindery finishing and mailing equipment to see why Epic would want to enter this fertile ground. The market is growing rapidly, but toner-based printing has an Achilles heel – a higher tendency for scratching and abrasion during mailing. Coating is an important process that assists digital printing in overcoming this vulnerability.

Some digital press manufacturers have applied additional toning stations to apply a special “clear toner,” a system that requires additional equipment and off-line post-processing. Others simply run full coating off-line. These two-step (or more) processes limit coating options and are more expensive to perform.

Epic, in the development of a highly automated inline CTi-635 coating system for the Xerox iGen3 (with other versions to follow), has gone a step further in delivering full automation. It has transferred its traditional graphic arts coating technology to the iGen3, with results that are more durable and completely integrated electronically. That allows the system to coat and deliver finished sheets at the maximum speed of the iGen3: 100ppm. Epic’s custom-integrated electronics coat at the varying rates of digital presses, delivering sheets one after another, or via continuous feeding. Digitally printed works also are frequently produced intermittently when a variable print job finds some records speeding through faster and others at slower rates, depending on file complexity.

The CTi-635 inline coater’s controls (atop the fourth compartment in the six-unit device) are quite minimal compared to most anilox or other coaters. The operator simply selects the paper size from a menu of ranges, chooses the substrate thickness and hits the start button. There is an ability to fine-tune register, which can be adjusted from the control motorhome solar panels on the fly.

As the iGen3 runs, sheets are delivered into the Epic CTi635 coater station. A sheet detector senses jams, offering feedback on-line to the iGen3 so the press can automatically react to the situation and, if need be, shut down in an orderly fashion: sheets in the process of being printed go to the bypass tray stacker, instead of just stopping wherever they are on the paper path. This is an example of a peripheral reaching into the “smart press” functions. The Epic CTi-635 coater covers both overall and spot UV coating, with option for gloss or matte finish.

Finished sheets exit in sizes ranging from 7×7” to 14.33×22.5”. Samples examined were very even, and the coatings themselves enhanced the printed images in some cases.

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