Ready to touch the future at Dusseldorf?

Drupa 2012 saw over 3-lakh visitors from 100 countries, out of which 15,000 plus were Indian visitors, second only to the Germans., Business

27 May 2016 | By Noel D'Cunha

During the PrintWeek-Drupa webinar on 24 May, Noel D'Çunha, managing editor, PrintWeek India said, “End-to-end integration and automation is really the logical progression of automated workflows for pre-press. Expect to see increased automation of the end-to-end solution, cloud-based services, which was really the long established concept of offering remotely hosted software and storage or SAAS (software as a service)."

The press segment in 2015 saw installations of around 75 plus new presses. D’Cunha said, “Though presses are now considered a mature technology, they have steadily become more efficient – with more automation, cutting down waste and small gains in speed.”

Talking about Drupa, D’Cunha highlighted the new features and technologies from pre-media to workflow to offset presses to digital presses.

Kodak’s Sonora has been a success, good for up to 200,000 impressions and works with most UV inks.
Kodak introduced its now award-winning Sonora process-free plates three years ago. The manufacturer claims that, to date, its customers have saved.
Nearly 441.5 million liters of water, more than 170.5 million kWh of energy and over 3 million liters of chemicals.
Agfa will introduce new Azura plates with better image contrast as well as daylight stability and fast roll-up.
The new Azura TU VLF chemistry-free plates for very large-format offset applications in combination with the new Azura CX150 clean-out unit, and the Azura TE direct-on-press plates, that feature image contrast as well as daylight stability and fast roll-up.
Fujifilm will show its Superia plates, launched in 2015, the company claims is a solution for selected plates, processors, and pressroom chemistry that enables printers to achieve savings in material, water, energy, labor, and emissions.

What are the savings?
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Agfa’s Energy Elite Pro is Agfa’s next-generation no-bake thermal plate. It offers a run lengths up to 400,000 copies and in aggressive environments (e.g. UV and metallic inks) up to 150,000 copies. For even longer runs, Energy Elite Pro can be baked.
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Kodak was giving a limited edition the commemorative version of its new Electra Max Plate to the first 200 people who sign up


Expect to see increased automation of the end-to-end solution, cloud-based services, which really the long established concept of offering remotely hosted software and storage or SAAS (software as a service).
End-to-end integration and automation is really the logical progression of automated workflows for pre-press.
Heidelberg took it further to connect most aspects of a factory production workflow from pre-press through printing to finishing with its Prinect workflow.

Esko will show major improvements in its software products, now come under one umbrella, Esko Software Platform, which will take the course from ideation to finished product ready to go on the shop.
Importantly, Esko will now allow you to pick and choose the modules in the workflow that will suite their requirements
Agfa launched the latest version of Apogee 10 very recently. Improvements include automatic image correction, a web-based file upload and page approval portal that shows preflight notifications, page bleed and trim sizes to the connected print buyers, and can directly links to wide-format devices.
HP will splash the PrintOS. It is not an operating system but rather a set of cloud-based services for HP Indigo and other digital press users
It will function like a cross between the Adobe Creative Cloud and a professional print version of the Apple Store, where you can access and run an increasing choice of applications, sometimes temporarily by only paying for them when you need them

Enfocus is introducing Appstore, by which its Switch technology users can build their own workflows by buying functions and components from other users
At the core of Switch is its ability to automate repetitive tasks in a consistent way
Switch has a community of specialists including users, integrators and Channel Partners around the globe. Enfocus Appstore is a co-creation platform where you can instantly buy and use applications that extend your Switch flows and ultimately, your operations.
Heidelberg will introduce Prinect Smart Automation which will allow both digital and offset workflows to be integrated, as well as monitoring and measuring every machine and even elements within the machine.
Kodak will send Prinergy to the cloud
Komori with the Internet of things – KP-Connect will put production, maintenance and error reporting information into the cloud. 

EFI will also be showing their workflow,  but is playing its cards unusually close to its chest for this Drupa.
In the W2P area
Chili Publish’s, new online PDF rendering solution called Chili Rendro – can render, stream and 3D view PDFs onto any platform that supports HTML5 canvas.

Offset presses

2015 saw around 75 plus new presses (30% of which were four--colour plus with a UV coater) and installed.
And though presses are now considered a mature technology, they have steadily become more efficient – with more automations, cutting out waste. Small gains in speed.
Hence, the first question to ask is not: Kya speed hai, but: kitna jaldi makeready karti hai.
Komori is one the few press manufacturers to announce a new offset press – The B2-plus Lithrone G29. The G stands for green improvements, seen in its bigger sized G40 presses. There’s one in action at International Print O Pac in Noida.
KBA is the other press manufacturer to show a new press with a B2-plus Rapida 75 Pro, a five-colour with UV-LED curing. By pre-selecting makeready sequences and activating them with a single button, makeready times can be cut by 50%.
Heidelberg’s plan include a B2 Anicolor keyless inking press with features for much faster colour changes, cutting makeready times by 60 to 100 seconds (useful for packaging printers in particular).
Ryobi will demo the 920 press as an eight-colour perfector. This means, it will have four units, then a UV drier after the perfector and another on the delivery for the second side. In the past, people would have ordered a 10-unit press with two coaters to seal the ink. The cost saved on the extra units almost pays for the UV driers.
Keep an eye on UV-LED or low-energy LE-HUV from all the above manufacturers
There are retrofits services that suppliers like IST, AMS offer. They work on most presses with conversions taking one or two days at about 10% of the cost.
Digital presses

Digital kit manufacturers have turned up the volume.
Larger digital press formats in the B2 and B1 range, most targeting the packaging market.
The question is: will it replace offset? Can it produce offset litho quality?
There are two technologies that are making the rounds in this space: Liquid Toner and inkjet. 
In the HP Indigo range you have the 10000, 20000 and 30000 presses, of which 300 have been installed.
In Inkjet, Fujifilm’s JetPress 720 has about 70 installations.
Delphax has three installations of its Elan presses.
HP has been successful, but most of the installations have been with the 10000 
Four years since the last Drupa, there have been less than 100 sheetfed inkjet installations – the main constraints have been speed, quality and cost of ownership.
Highlights at Drupa 2016
HP has the biggest stand, a space the size of a soccer field. About 56 machines weighing 230 tons in all.
There will be new digital presses – Indigo 50000, 12000 and 8000 plus upgrades to almost all its presses. The 50000 and 8000 presses are two-engine machines.
The Indigo 50000
The 25-metre line, Indigo 50000 is a 746x1120mm wide web press that can print 10 A4 pages per imposition and can produce 42 m/min or 760 A4 ppm in four-colour mode on paper thickness ranging from 40 gms to 350 gsm.
Indigo 12000
The Indigo 12000 uses the 10000 platform but with hardware like new blankets and mechanical properties.

Indigo 12000
The one-shot mode is introduced, with the press capable of producing 4,600 pages in monochrome, and 3,450 pages in the enhanced print mode. A high definition laser array (HDLA) technology doubles the resolution from 800 dpi to 1,600 dpi
Indigo 8000
The new double-engine, double speed narrow web press prints at a speed of 80 meters per minute or 262 feet per minute press and features two WS6800 engines
If you are interested you may also see HP’s inkjet offering, PageWide, more for the High Definition Nozzle Architecture (HDNA) technology, which allows two modes of printing – performance and quality.
Heidelberg’s PrimeFire (B1 press) industrial inkjet press developed in partnership with FujiFilm.
The digital kit uses Heidelberg Speedmaster 106 as the base for the machine and incorporates Fujifilm Dimatix’s Samba MEMS printhead technology, the 1200 x 1200 dpi greyscale printheads with a minimum droplet size of 2 picolitres
Offered in seven colours CMYK plus orange, violet and green configuration using water-based ink,, the PrimeFire will be packaging and specialist sheet applications.
It will run at 2000 sheets per hour in good quality and 5000 sph at for lower quality
The other B1 sheetfed press can be seen at the Landa stand – two Landa S10 B1 sheetfed straight printing presses.
The sheetfed presses will be running live at 13,000 B1 sheets per hour as well as one meter-wide (41-inch) web presses printing on plastic packaging films.
Komori’s B2 sheetfed inkjet press the Impremia IS29 developed in collaboration with Konica Minolta, which sells an almost identical machine under the KM-1 badge.
These roduction presses will print 3,000 simplex or 1,500 duplex B2 sheets per hour at up to 1,200dpi, with full variable print.
Canon’s first cut-sheet inkjet press, Océ Varioprint i300, which was announced in 2015, will also join the inkjet party.

This high-speed press can print at 300 A4 ipm / 8700 duplex A4/hour and has the ability to print on 12 different stocks per job with print size: B3 (353x500mm).
Xerox with BrenvaHD and Trivor 2400 inkjet presses.
Xerox will launch its first cut sheet inkjet press, the Brenva HD, at drupa alongside a new continuous feed machine, the Trivor 2400.
The B3+ sized BrenvaHD can print at 197 A4 pages per minute machine, while Trivor 2400 runs at 168 m/min in colour and 200 m/min in monochrome.
Kodak, a new version of Nexpress, the ZX3900, the fifth unit will be able to print white and a longer maximum sheet length of up to 1.35m (48inches). And a new high volume CF inkjet technology, the UltraStream.
Supporting the push into packaging, the UltraStream is a twin-head eight-colour system which can run an extended gamut CMYK plus orange, green and violet plus digital varnish system (XGV) printing onto film and foil using its food-safe water-based inks.
Xeikon kit, Trillium One, a four-colour continuous feed liquid toner printing press aimed at commercial print market . The Trillium One has a print width of 19.7inch (500mm), prints at 60m/min.
In areas of print where the ink coverage is 40-50%, the prints are expected to be more competitive than inkjet. No optimisation or coating is required for the fusing process, it can run a wide range of substrates.

Some other interesting digital kits
At the Heidelberg stand also see the OmniFire 1000 and 250, direct-to-shape printer, capable of printing onto objects of up to a cubic metre in size. The four- and six-axis robot system can handle small and big round as well as, irregular objects of up to one-metre size.

Also see DataLase’s new inkless-colour marking monochrome technology from this company. The laser inline digital printing kit – Variprint can print on labels and folding cartons at the point of packaging.
We have seen coding and marking applications, in white, clear and black. But Variprint delivers a selection of monochrome colours – blue, green and red text and graphics of up to 100mm high and 2m/sec with one laser.