Product of the Month: Heliostar II from W&H

The Heliostar II rotogravure press, which embodies W&H’s extensive manufacturing experience, is designed to deliver superior print quality at high speed, Abhiroop Chakraborty of W&H tells Rahul Kumar

09 Mar 2022 | By Rahul Kumar

What does the machine do?
The Heliostar II is the latest generation model of the successful Heliostar. It is designed to deliver superior print quality at highest speed on a variety of materials, including sensitive substrates like MDO-PE for sustainable packaging. The press provides fast and operator-friendly changeovers along with fully integrated inspection and quality control systems. It features W&H’s cutting-edge register system, energy efficient drying systems and makes sustainable use of inks and substrates to minimise wastage, giving excellent printing results.

What is the USP of the machine? 
The USPs of the machine include W&H’s Heliocontrol, offering precise register accuracy even for low contrast inks and varnishes. Combined with SUPERGRIP rollers, accurate register can be achieved even with challenging substrates such as PE and the eco-friendly MDO-PE; the pre-register setting can be done rapidly and error-free at the push of a button with the Easy-Sync function; equipped with individually driven inking rollers for perfect inking at all speeds; powerful dryers guarantee high drying capacity and lowest residual solvents even at maximum output; the integrated Procontrol and Vision modules simplify machine operation and reduce setup times generating greater economic benefits.

When was this introduced to the Indian market?
The latest generation Heliostar II was introduced to the Indian market in 2020. 

What was the thought process when the machine was conceived?
The Heliostar II is a worthy upgrade to the widely successful Heliostar. It was conceived with a view to achieve the highest print quality even at the maximum speed. The new features and functions allow the machine to be faster, more powerful, more accurate and more efficient. The machine is Packaging 4.0 ready with IoT integration.

How does this new press differ from the previous one?
With better ease of operation, greater flexibility and faster setup and changeover times, it is now the most advanced rotogravure press designed for the highest outputs and for more demanding substrates. A redesigned inking system for minimising ink in circulation, improved Combicart  trolley design for easier exchange of cylinder and/or inking systems and Supergrip rollers for better register accuracy even for challenging substrates makes the machine a powerhouse, generating greater economic benefits.

What is the target market?
The machine caters to a variety of applications, primarily targeting food and non-food flexible packaging. The machine is ideally suited for the Indian market for its compatibility to a wide range of inks and its capability to process both solvent and water-based inks, even with specialty applications, such as cold-seal, hot-seal, gloss, matte and haptic lacquers.

What kind of substrates can it handle?
The machine can handle a wide variety of substrates, such as film, foil, paper and laminates. The machine can also handle challenging substrates, such as PE, including sustainable substrates like MDO-PE.

What is the speed of the machine?
The speed is 400 to 600-m/min.

Is there anything in the machine, which is available as a standalone?
Machine parts are not sold as standalone, though like any other W&H machine, some new features of the Heliostar II can be retrofitted to previously installed Heliostar presses.

Describe how the machine is user-friendly?
The machine takes operator friendliness to the next level with its automation and inspection systems to enhance production efficiency. These systems include Vision, W&H’s fully-integrated web monitoring and defect detection system for 100% high-quality printing, the Easy Module for quick register setting and integrated ink management system for better colourconsistency. All of this can be controlled and monitored from a single point of operation through the Procontrl touchscreen.

Which are the solutions to improve health and safety of the operator?
In the standard configuration, each printing station is fitted with standard LEL sensors to increase fire safety. There are noise dampers to reduce noise level down to 78 dB(A). The machine is designed for easy accessibility for maintenance and operations.

What training and support are on offer?
With 400+ service technicians available worldwide, and 45+ qualified technicians in India, customers can be rest assured of timely services right from planning and commissioning to complete life cycle of the machine. W&H Academy offers both online and on-site trainings to customers, conducts events to regularly address the latest industry and development trends and provides practice-oriented consulting to individual challenges.

Which are the W&H services available with the machine?
Quick and effective troubleshooting directly on site using original spare parts; 24/7 hotline service supported by experienced specialists; and identification and fault rectification through direct online remote access to the machine available worldwide 24/7.

Which are the different models?
There are two models: Heliostar II S and Heliostar II A


  • Printing decks: maximum 12
  • Printing width: 800 to 1600-mm
  • Repeat range: 450 to 920-mm 
  • Press speed: 400/500/600-m/min. 

Contact details:
Abhiroop Chakraborty
Assistant manager, sales
Windmoller & Holscher India