TRESU’s ancillary program to offer automated, waste-free ink supply

At Labelexpo India, Capital Graphic Supplies/TRESU Group (Stand H1) will showcase ancillary equipment, including supply systems and chamber doctor blades for controlling and automating ink coating supply in narrow and mid-web flexo printing presses.

TRESU’s flexo ancillary solutions provide enclosed, automatically controlled ink circulation, thus reducing make-ready time and material waste, and assuring uniform quality. The F10 iCon ink supply system regulates ink flow, pressure and viscosity, ensuring a constant, accurate ink density on the printed substrate, without air contamination. This energy-efficient system also provides thorough automatic cleaning, achieving a complete ink change cycle in five to ten minutes.

TRESU’s chamber doctor blades bring label and packaging printers many benefits, including reduced ink and substrate waste, uniform print quality, increased press speeds, shorter cleaning times and reduced emissions. Featuring the company’s patented seal system, they prevent leakage and air contamination, thereby ensuring clean, blister-free print result with fast drying characteristics, better reflection and higher gloss values. When doctor blades need replacing, TRESU’s patented clamping systems enable changeovers in less than two minutes.

Exhibited chambered doctor blade systems include the FlexiPrint IMW E-Line, for widths up to 1800mm (70.8in) and speeds up to 500m/min (1640ft/min); and the closed-cassette FlexiPrint Reservoir, which needs no pump and operates at press speeds of up to 300m/min (984ft/min).

TRESU’s lightweight carbon fibre chamber doctor blades up to 6000mm (236in) width feature a top-coated ink-repellent surface, offering protection against detergents and adhesives with pH values of 9.0 and above, and easy cleaning. Curved inner surfaces maximize volume and facilitate controlled discharge.

Omet to debut IFlex in India

Italian press manufacturers Omet Srl will exhibit their new Omet IFlex for the first time in India at Labelexpo India 2016. The iFLEX label press is simple to use and quick at set-up. Several innovations characterize this press, all aiming at simplifying the printer’s work in reaching the highest quality, effortless. They include laser-assisted pre-register and register setting devices that speed up the machine set-up and rebooting after job change.

iFLEX has shortest web path in narrow web printing for incredible savings in the start-up phase (waste measured is below the transition paper between two prints!). It is claimed to be the only machine to have all the impression rollers Direct Drive with obvious benefits on the print quality and in waste savings. The machine handles a wide range of sizes, from 5.5 to 18'' for small spending in printing plates production. Designed to work continuously, without maintenance stops, it is a robust, silent press, meant for intensive work cycles and performance, and consistent result.

iFLEX printing press for labels fills a gap in technology supporting medium to large label converters whose need is to produce in one pass large amounts of standard labels with just-in-time deliveries and decrease process wastage. iFLEX can also represent for label converters with lower budget capabilities the ideal press to print labels with a high level of efficiency and a high return on investment.

Omet is exclusively represented in India by Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi.

Unique barrier solution from BOBST and Michelman

In response to industry demand for high barrier AlOx transparent films to be better protected during the conversion process, BOBST and Michelman have collaborated to develop a unique solution combining topcoats with AlOx coatings to prevent barrier performance loss during conversion processes such as printing and lamination.

Combining Michelman’s expertise in the field of developing coatings with BOBST’s unparalleled machinery conversion know-how in the fields of vacuum metallizing, coating lines, lamination and both gravure and flexo printing; the two companies have worked together to create an innovative system for AlOx high barrier clear films. Two topcoat formulations have been developed by Michelman; one is a topcoat which gives protection to the AlOx layer during conversion, the second is a barrier enhancing topcoat which as well as having all the benefits of a protective topcoat also provides additional barrier functionality improvements in both OTR and WVTR to prolong package content shelf life.

Commenting on this collaboration, Juan Cano, sales director for the Vacuum Coating & Metallizing Product Line at BOBST said, “Our simple to operate and efficient AlOx vacuum deposition process for single layer application onto clear films has been well-established in the market over the last 5 years and is still in high demand. However, finding a solution to protect the AlOx coated films, produced by our metallizers, during more complex conversion processes in the flexible packaging industry has been a priority for our customers in order to retain their high barrier properties. Working in collaboration with Michelman and having the advantage of drawing on their extensive experience in the field of coatings has enabled development and application of these two unique topcoats to AlOx coated films using specially modified coatings platforms from our sister company Bobst Italia; we are excited to launch this innovative and fully integrated AlOx Conversion process into the market”.

Robin Cooper, strategic program manager at Michelman, adds, “We are pleased to work with BOBST in this unique opportunity to introduce new barrier systems into the market. Here a unique collaboration has allowed us to combine our expertise with leading OEM BOBST to bring more high performance solutions to our joint customers seeking high levels of OTR and WVTR barrier.”

BOBST is the world’s leading supplier of equipment and services to packaging and label manufacturers in the folding carton, corrugated board and flexible material industries. While, Michelman is a global developer and manufacturer of environmentally friendly advanced materials for industry, offering solutions for the coatings, printing & packaging and industrial manufacturing markets.

manroland India highlights XLP 504 industrial printer

Novexx Solutions, part of Possehl Group and merged with manroland in India, will showcase the XLP 504 industrial printer at Labelexpo India 2016.

Launched in September 2016, XLP 504 can print on a large selection of label materials including paper, polyester labels and tags.

Customers can choose between models with 203, 300 or 600 dpi print resolution. The XLP 504, which comes with a two-year warranty, has an internal ethernet as a standard feature and a user friendly display. The 600 dpi resolution printer enables printing of tiny fonts, barcodes and symbols. The company claims the XLP 504 can print 1000 labels in eight minutes.

Other products presented by Novexx Solutions will see live demonstrations of a Print & Apply head and a labeling machine. Apart from this, the company will also display ribbons, blank and product labels used on the XLP 504, Print & Apply machines and labeling machines.

Novexx Solution is the former Industrial Print & Apply (IPA) business of Avery Dennison, which the L Possehl & Co Group of companies acquired in June 2015.

Print to shape!

Digital printing is gradually making inroads into newer territories, the latest being printing directly on bottles, balls, drinking glasses, ceramic cups, flacons, tubes etc. in round, oval, square, cylindrical or conical shapes. Varsha Verma explores this new technology trend and how it will affect the label printing industry.

Labels and packaging is by far experiencing the maximum growth in the printing industry. According to Markets and Markets, a market research firm worldwide, the industrial labels market is expected to exceed 50 billion dollars (USD) by 2020.

Packaging is all about innovation as every product clamours for attention. The winner is the product that stands apart and packaging plays a major role in the selection process. Even a good quality product fails to make the first impact if it has poor packaging. Substrates, shapes, curvatures, value added effects and now personalisation – all are changing the packaging industry.

Digital printing has already made inroads into the packaging segment, with its label printing machines, corrugated machines and digital direct-to-shape printing.

Packaging demands…

Packaging industry is more demanding as it requires different pretreatment for different materials like glass, plastic, cardboard, metal, etc. Also, it is characterised by numerous shapes and curvatures. Besides, eco-friendly packaging, food-grade packaging – all make it all the more challenging. It is a constant effort to make the packaging better day by day.

Direct-to-shape: the next technology

Ever since the time digital printers were introduced, the digital printing industry has come a long way. Their quality has become at par with offset, the consistency has increased and it has become more feasible for short runs. With direct-to-shape printing, the technology has eliminated the cost of producing and applying the labels. This would result in considerable cost saving, would be faster and can be used for newer product ideas. There would be minimum changeover time from one job to another and run lengths can vary from one to many.

It can print full colour images and text directly onto cans, bottles, sleeves and other shaped containers for beverage, personal care and home care products, etc. Thus, you can use the full package for printing as there is no limit to the label size. One can print on ridged or grooved edges as well. This opens up the entire surface for printing, which advertisers and product companies can make use of.

Further, it can be personalised – one can create different designs or messages for different target audience or location, thereby engaging the consumers at a different level, enhancing brand loyalty and driving new revenue streams. It can also be used for test marketing new products.

What’s more? One can also integrate coding and marking into the printing process, which include barcodes, manufacturing dates, expiry dates, etc. One can print when one wants, thereby reducing the cost of storage.

Technology for direct-to-shape printing

Xaar 1002 is the core of the direct-to-shape printing. Xaar’s TF Technology keeps inks in constant motion and prevents sedimentation so that heavily-pigmented white ink is jetted smoothly and consistently onto clear PET and glass containers in a single pass as opaque under- or over-coat layers and for liquid labels. It also enables printing onto curved and shaped surfaces in both horizontal and vertical ‘skyscraper’ modes, making Xaar printheads compatible with many production line handling systems. They also give the flexibility to configure multi-colour units and dedicated spot colour print stations/carousels to suit specific applications. Its 1000 Optimised Geometry nozzles deliver precise nozzle uniformity and highly accurate drop placement. With 360 nozzles per inch, and up to 8 grey levels result in an effective print resolution greater than 1000 dpi/li. These combine to deliver exceptionally smooth tones and wide gamut vibrant images, alongside pin sharp text and fine detail.

While, adhos, Germany, has launched the aLITE technology (advancedLight Initiated Thermal Emission) at drupa 2016. It is based on an area-focussed, high intensity energy source, to allow instantaneous thermal processing. Thus water based or solvent based coatings can be instantly dried or even cured, which is a mandatory requirement to overcome the present application barriers to coating applications in “direct to shape printing”. aLITE also allows the performing of inline drying and sintering of functional coatings applied by inkjet or aerosol, as necessary, for cost competitive 3D-production of 3-D components. Typically these are only processed today in hot air ovens, mostly offline in standalone production units, requiring much space and much time.

Printers in this category…

Heidelberg and Fuji offer “Omnifire” 4d technology – which customers can use to personalize and individually print on objects. Be it footballs, packages or, in future, maybe cars or planes. Soon, the company will launch “Omnifire 1000” which is capable of printing on objects of up to 1 meter in size. Furthermore, they are working on a robot-mounted “Omnifire XL” as an alternative to individual coating.

Mimaki offers UV inkjet printer UJF-7151 plus, which enables high-precision ink dot placement and beautiful printing through Mimaki’s proprietary technology and at top-level productivity. It can print on media up to 28- by 20-inches – a familiar format size in the screen printing industry – and on materials up to 6 inches thick. Mimaki’s Kebab option can print on cylindrical objects such as bottles and cans, and is expected to be available in late 2016.

Roland offers LEJ-640FT UV flatbed printer, which delivers exceptional graphics that are anything but “flat”. In addition to unmatched material size and thickness capabilities, the LEJ-640FT utilizes CMYK, White and Clear Coat ECO-UV inks for stunning special effects including textures and simulated embossing. It all adds up to powerful visual impact. The LEJ-640FT UV flatbed printer has a 64”x 98” print bed that works beautifully with both thick and thin substrates - print on delicate film one job, and dense, rigid materials the next. While the LEJ-640FT is ideal for use with standard materials like foamcore, plastic, wood, glass and metal, it’s also the perfect solution if you want to print on hundreds of USB drives, smartphone cases or distinct items like guitar cases, water bottles and more.

There are many more such printers on the block, which are poised to take packaging printing to an absolutely new level. While it is still early to comment whether it will replace labels in the long run, but one thing is clear –this new technology is creating lot of interest and making headlines all over.

Group Publications