Production Inkjet
In February, Ricoh, through its European division, introduced the new Pro VC40000 next generation continuous feed inkjet platform aimed at transactional and direct mail clients to deliver high quality output with enhanced productivity features. This newest addition to Ricoh’s market-leading inkjet portfolio complements the existing Pro VC60000 and InfoPrint 5000 systems.

The Pro VC40000 features what Ricoh describes as a combination of speed, resolution and ease of use. At the heart of this solution lies the Ricoh TotalFlow Print Server R600A digital front end (DFE) that has been optimized to deliver workflow management for the production of complex, data-driven direct mail and transactional output.

The Ricoh Pro VC40000 operates at speeds up to 120 metres per minute, making it capable of producing more than 100,000 A4 images per hour. With paper support from 40 to 250 gsm, application possibilities range from lightweight books to high coverage postcards.

Ricoh explains it has made significant enhancements to its software and services offerings to support the launch of the Ricoh Pro VC40000. Ricoh ProcessDirector provides transactional and direct mail workflow support designed to maximize equipment throughput, help ensure 100 percent output integrity and qualify for maximum postal discounts. Additionally, the Ricoh TotalFlow Print Server R600A provides native support for PDF, PDF/VT and AFP together with JDF and advanced colour management support.
Canon unveiled its new Océ ProStream series, which the company describes as a revolutionary new approach to inkjet printing for further adoption into the mainstream of commercial printing. The Océ ProStream prints uncoated, inkjet-optimized, gloss and matt-coated papers at a rate of 80 metres per minute or 1,076 A4 sheets per minute.

“We deliberately took a green-field approach to design, with a commitment to create a product that would open up fresh business opportunities for commercial printers, particularly in high-growth segments such as premium direct mail and marketing collateral,” said Christian Unterberger, Canon’s Chief Marketing Officer & Executive Vice President Production Printing Products. “The Océ ProStream delivers on this commitment, pushing inkjet even further into the commercial printing mainstream with its amazing quality and versatility.”

The Océ ProStream, according to Canon, combines several completely new core technologies for continuous feed inkjet, and builds on a decade of experience in inkjet with the Océ JetStream, Océ ColorStream and Océ VarioPrint i300.

The latest piezo drop-on-demand inkjet print head generation, explains Canon, is leveraged with Océ Multilevel technology for sharper details, smoother half tones and economized ink usage. An Océ-developed set of ColorGrip and polymer pigment inks creates strong colours – on uncoated, inkjet-optimized and gloss and matt- coated offset papers.

The new press series uses a sensitive floatation air dryer in which the printed paper is not touched until the print images are fully robust – there are no scratches or changes to gloss levels and minimal paper stress for maximum quality, explains Canon.

The Océ ProStream is describes as a heavy-duty production engine with a resolution of 1,200 dpi and multilevel dot modulation at full 1,076 A4 per minute productivity.

The Océ ProStream recently earned an iF design award from Germany’s iF International Forum for Design, as chosen by a 58-member jury of independent experts in a competition of over 5,500 entries from 59 countries.

“We are confident that the Océ ProStream series will continue to drive our success in our competitive market,” said Unterberger. “With more than 33 percent percent market share, Canon Océ is the undisputed worldwide leader in continuous feed inkjet. The Océ ProStream will build on this heritage and carry forward our proud tradition of innovation in professional digital printing.”
At the Hunkeler Innovationdays in Lucerne, Switzerland, HP introduced its new PageWide Web Press T235 HD, part of the T200 HD Color series. The company explains this new entry-level continuous-feed inkjet web press provides commercial printers with an economical entry point into production-strength inkjet printing.

The T235 HD platform, explains HP, is targeted for publishing, production mail and commercial print needs. It can be upgraded to the HP PageWide Web Press T240 HD for increased productivity.  

“With the introduction of the HP PageWide T235 HD, it’s easier for more PSPs to make the analogue to digital transformation,” said Eric Wiesner, General Manager, HP PageWide Industrial Division, HP Inc. “As the HP PageWide Web Press platform reaches a milestone of 210 billion customer-printed pages, it further reinforces the market’s adoption of HP Thermal Inkjet technology.”

Using HP’s High Definition Nozzle Architecture (HDNA) with a native resolution of 2,400 nozzles per inch, the duplex HP PageWide Web Press T235 HD runs at 400 feet per minue (122 metres per minute) in Performance Mode, using single drop weight printing. It is capable of producing 200 feet per minute (61 mpm) in Quality Mode, using dual drop weight printing with seven levels of half-toning per colour, and finer grain printing for smoother skin tones, gradients and secondary colour solid fills.

“HP's high-volume PageWide solutions allow print service providers to add greater value to high-volume data-driven print communications with uncompromising performance and colour quality that brands demand,” said Wiesner.
After previewing the technology at drupa in mid-2016, Xaar plc has launched the Xaar 502 product family of greyscale piezoelectric drop-on-demand print heads designed for a range of applications. The first release from this print head family is the Xaar 502 GS15 O optimized for Coding and Marking applications.

The 502 GS15 O print head, explains Xaar, meets the needs of manufacturers developing machines to print high-quality, late-stage product identification like text, product data, bar codes and graphics onto secondary packaging or directly onto shaped products and primary packaging.

Xaar states this print head delivers a step change in product identification technology by combining binary and greyscale capabilities in one wide-swathe (70.5 mm) print head. With the ability to print drop sizes from 15-75 pL, the print head can print up to six grey levels for high-resolution, intense blacks on low contrast surfaces such as cardboard outer boxes. The Xaar 502 GS15 0 works with porous or semi-porous outer packaging and cardboard, giving the ability to better manage ink usage.

“The Xaar 502 GS15 O is the pinnacle of 25 years of Xaar’s investment in developing piezoelectric drop-on-demand printheads,” said Simon Kirk, Senior Product Manager at Xaar. “Today brand owners and retailers expect to be able to put larger, more detailed, more brand-orientated product identification text and graphics onto their packaging. Another key driver for manufacturers is to have more control over ink usage while delivering higher resolution print on cardboard. This new wide-swathe greyscale inkjet printhead delivers the superb performance needed to achieve this.”

The Xaar 502 family utilizes Xaar’s latest piezoelectric drop-on-demand actuator design, PrecisionPlus, which, explains the company, provides a long throw distance and increases stability and robustness of the print head. Combined with the optimized nozzle guard to support automated maintenance routines, the Xaar 502 family of print heads is positioned for use in demanding and harsh factory environments.

Also included in the 502 print head family is Xaar’s TF Technology which can be run in Pulsed mode. This optional new mode recirculates ink behind the nozzles during non-printing periods only.

The Xaar 502 GS15 O is compatible with a range of oil-based inks popular for use in coding and marking applications, including the latest addition to Xaar’s ink portfolio black mineral oil-free (MOF) SunJet IK822. This ink is designed for use on secondary packaging, with an ability to break down easily during recycling.
At Graph Expo, continuing in Orlando this week, HP Inc. announced four new 30-inch HP PageWide Web Presses powered by its High Definition Nozzle Architecture (HDNA) technology: HP PageWide Web Press T390 HD, T390M HD, T380 HD  and T370 HD.

The new system print at 500 feet per minute in quality mode and, according to HP, are aimed at applications like colour and trade books, journals, retail catalogues, brochures and marketing collateral. The company also introduced a new technology that can be applied through the HP PageWide Web Presses, called HP Link Technology, which embeds Internet-connected codes and invisible watermarks in printed collateral, such as customized textbooks, magazines or instruction manuals.
 
Most recently, Toronto-based Webcom leveraged HP Link Technology, along with HP One Book workflow solution and its HP PageWide Web Press T360, to produce several hundred individually personalized versions of Unsquaring the Wheel,, which are being shown at Graph Expo 2016.
 
HP PageWide Web Press customers recently surpassed 180 billion pages printed since 2009. HP explains customers are now running more than five billion pages per month, up from four billion pages per month in 2015. An HP PageWide Web Press T360M customer, explains HP, recently broke a worldwide productivity record by producing 7.3 million pages in a day and more than 32 million pages in a week. MLI Marketing Solutions became its 1,000th PrintOS customer.
Part II of The pulse of print heads focuses on the advances of manufacturing piezo and thermal systems for use in inkjet presses taking greater aim at commercial printing and packaging

With the growing range of investment options, PrintAction is producing a series of articles, called The pulse of print heads, to better understand one of the most-critical components of any production inkjet press. In Part 1, last month, we took a look at the relatively simple discussion of drop size, primarily because print head R&D and inkjet messaging for more than a decade focused on printing ever smaller drops of ink with the goal of improving overall inkjet quality, even as some commercial settings may require larger drops for higher volume work.

This month, Part II of The pulse of print heads focuses on the manufacture of print heads and how it relates to the adoption of inkjet presses for a wider range of commercial-printing applications. When a production inkjet system requires dozens of print heads each costing a few thousands dollars, for example, the manufacture of print heads also relates to the initial purchase price of inkjet systems and subsequent print head replacement costs.

Crystals, diaphragms and heat
The past few years have seen the rise of two important technical terms in relation to the key piece of hardware – print heads – of production inkjet presses: Nanotechnology and MEMS. Print head makers and their press-building OEM partners – if not one and the same – have put both nanotechnology and MEMS into play for decades now. Short for Microelectromechanical Systems, MEMS basically describes any type of microscopic device, particularly devices with moving parts.

MEMS manufacturing, therefore, relates more directly to piezo print heads that eject ink with moving mechanical elements, walls or diaphragms. Thermal print head manufacturing is experiencing similarly important advances, albeit with different process definitions, as developers of both print head types absorb massive upfront factory costs to propel the printing industry’s adoption of inkjet.

“When we talk about MEMS, Xaar talks very holistically about our whole product portfolio – older [print heads] and new stuff. The difference being that we now use silicon MEMS, as well,” says Jason Remnant, Product Line Manager with Xaar, which has built inkjet print heads since 1990. He explains silicon is more or less used to form the base of the print head, providing it with fluidic chambers before a film is applied with PZT (piezoelectric pumping components).

Xaar’s older generation print heads were built with what the company refers to as Bulk PZT that would be cut down to make the actuator ejection device, with control signals and a source of energy. The advances in silicon PZT manufacturing provides print-head makers with scalability and accuracy, resulting in an ability to fit more nozzles onto the given size of a print-head plate, with corresponding drivers, at less cost – even if the head may not be as durable as a Bulk PZT build.

In 2007, Xaar started working toward silicon-based MEMS production and in May 2016 introduced its next-generation 5601 print, which is also built with what manufacturers describe as Thin Film technology for holding PZT components. “It has to be biggest thing to come along from Xaar in a decade,” says Remnant. Over the past decade, print head developments ensured the mass adoption of wide-format inkjet for commercial work, as well as ceramics printing and print products with lower quality requirements like the inner pages of books, statements and forms. The commercial printing industry – with its many applications and quality demands – requires a print-head evolution that is well under way.

“The 5601 is a new platform of print heads that will absolutely drive the opportunity to digitize more print in the world,” says Remnant. In addition to reaching higher manufacturing levels at smaller micro-scales (nanotechnology), the new generation of print heads for commercial work, packaging and laminates, need to jet fluids other than solvent and UV. Remnant explains the 5601 can jet low-viscosity fluids, including aqueous and latex-type inks, which also opens up inkjet to the world of textiles.

To deploy the 5601, Xaar is working closely with Ricoh, which holds significant press interests in commercial and high-speed printing markets. “Past print heads have included silicon MEMS techniques and now new designs are being developed. MEMS and thin-film technology are not changing Ricoh’s print head position, but rather, these two technologies are enhancing and expanding Ricoh’s inkjet print head capabilities,” says Joseph Ryan, Director Business Development, Ricoh Printing Systems America.

The most-advanced print head manufacturing models today integrate components to create more of a print chip than a print head. “MEMS is a bit of a misnomer for HP thermal inkjet technology,” says Ross Allen, Senior Technical Specialist, HP Inkjet Technology Platform, who first joined the company as an engineer in 1981. “There are no moving mechanical elements in an HP print head. The ink is the only moving part. So, HP thermal inkjet is a MicroElectroFluidic System, and that term is not in common use.”

HP builds its newest generation of print heads with silicon and photolithographic polymer technologies. Allen explains this allows the entire print head, including on-board electronics, to be built with technologies that were originally developed for manufacturing integrated circuits like computer chips. HP’s MicroElectroFluidic advances resulted in the launch of its Scalable Printing Technology (SPT) around a decade ago. Allen explains SPT enables fine structures, both electronic and fluidic, to be defined, precision-aligned and built on a silicon substrate.

Just as Xaar faced limitations producing Bulk PZT, HP also previously faced manufacturing challenges with its original thermal heads because they employed separately fabricated nozzle plates that had to be mechanically aligned and adhered to a silicon substrate with fluidic channels and chambers. Allen explains more complexity came from the use of different material properties, such as thermal expansion between an electroformed nickel nozzle plate and the silicon (polymer) component.

“By building fluidic – ink – chambers, passages, and nozzle plates out of the same photo-imageable polymer in layers up from the surface of a silicon wafer – with its electronic circuits – larger and more complex print heads may be produced,” says Allen. “HP thermal inkjet print heads are essentially integrated circuits that eject ink.”

Like Xaar’s 5601, Epson’s PrecisionCore and Fujifilm Dimatix’ Samba technology, HP SPT is print head platform, meaning it continues to receive R&D dollars to include what Allen describes as smaller fluidic structures: Smaller drop generator chambers, ink passages, nozzles and built-in filters that catch particles in the ink.

“This means that current generations of an HP print head chip – typically about an inch long – can have thousands of identical nozzles and deliver two or four different colours of ink. These chips are placed end-to-end, staggered – and with a small overlap – to build print heads that are 4.25- and 8.5-inches wide.”

Compact nozzles and zones
The ability to design nozzle-dense print heads – and manufacture them on a grand scale – is critical for inkjet-press adoption in commercial printing for a number of reasons from quality to cost. Technically, nozzle-dense heads allow press makers to build larger format presses with smaller print zones. Xaar’s 5601 is built in a Z-pattern to interlace the print heads and reduce the printing area of – ideally – a single-pass inkjet press built by one of its partners.

A smaller print zone reduces potential printing complications with fast moving paper. “Being able to assemble a number of print heads into large arrays allows large systems to be assembled,” says Ryan. “Aligning print heads, especially in high-resolution printing applications, has always been a challenge to system designers. Almost all print heads have alignment techniques using precision locating pins, flat control surfaces, and incorporating physical configurations, such as Z forms and trapezoidal configurations for interlocking and alignment.”

Employing traditional print heads in a single-pass production inkjet press, explains Xaar’s Jason Remnant, typically required staggering the print heads on a print bar to address issues like number of applicable colours and redundancy, particularly as press format sizes increased. Staggering heads can equate to deeper print bars, which in turn increases the print zone. “A small print zone is really critical because it has a [reduced] cost on the build of your machine and it also has a big influence on the print quality of your output,” explains Remnant. “If you are making a huge single-pass printer and it turns out that your print zone is two-metres wide, you have to control your substrates [to] get them from the first colour all the way to the nozzles of the last colour – and [the paper must] be where you expect it to be, so the drops end up where you want them.”

Challenges of running a larger print zone are exacerbated, explains Remnant, because it allows for more swelling when paper is hit with fluids, particularly if absorbing water. “Part of the design of this [5601] head was to allow the OEM to make a very compact print zone and, in fact, the concept for a four-colour system with our print speed would actually mean you are printing quicker than the swelling of the paper.”

The application of staggered print head bars, of course, becomes efficient when building integrated print chips with super-packed nozzles. For the first generation of print heads used in the HP PageWide Web Presses, Allen explains nozzles were spaced in two offset columns of 600 nozzles per inch to print at 1,200 dpi across the web. “The newest generation of HP print heads, called High Definition Nozzle Architecture, places small drop weight nozzles between the original high drop weight nozzles for dual drop weight printing. Across each ink feed slot – a slot through the silicon chip that supplies ink to the fluidics layer – these print heads feature 2,400 nozzles per linear inch,” says Allen. “A low drop weight nozzle prints in the same dot row as a high drop weight nozzle across the ink feed slot, so the printing resolution is still 1,200 dpi across the web.”

HP’s print head build with integrated circuit technologies means many hundreds of its print head chips can be made on one silicon wafer. “This leads to large economies of scale in manufacturing,” says Allen, “where many different print head series can be built in the same HP factory.” Economies of scale provided by today’s print-head manufacturing results in lower-cost products that will ultimately affect the price of production inkjet presses and introduce a wider range of lower-cost, smaller-format systems for commercial printing. With growing use of total-cost-of-ownership investment models, printers should also consider the cost of replacing silicon-based print heads.

“I don’t see any breakthroughs coming in any inkjet technology that could be considered a dramatic reduction in replacement cost. HP SPT already delivers manufacturing economies of scale that are reflected in print head price,” says Allen. “What could happen to reduce effective print head cost-to-print is longer print head life, which drives down cost per square metre. Of course, HP and others are always working to develop longer life, more reliable print heads, but lower prices will be evolutionary and not a dramatic breakthrough.”
German press maker KBA has worked with Xerox to develop a new B1 sheetfed press, called the KBA VariJET 106, aimed at folding-carton printing. There are currently two such presses being developed at KBA’s German facilities and the company describes the program’s progress as being in the final stages of development.

VariJET 106 combines offset printing and finishing technology with inkjet technologies, the latter developed by Xerox, in a highly modular system that can be tailored for customer requirements, including optimized inline processes.

The press presentation via video at drupa included post inkjet options, double coating and drying, rotary die-cutting, pre-treatment and drying, corona treatment, offset units, opaque white and cold foil application.

KBA explains the press is suitable for industrial production and can run a range of substrates. Described as “digital sheetfed for folding carton,” KBA expects the system to be complete in a few months for 2017.
Electronics For Imaging, presenting its largest drupa tradeshow exhibit to date, is showcasing its new Nozomi one-pass inkjet platform aimed at the corrugated, paper packaging and display printing sectors.

On the drupa floor, EFI is displaying the 1.8-metre-wide, single-pass Nozomi C18000 press, targeting short-run, on-demand work. EFI describes the direct-to-corrugated board press as its biggest inkjet product development to date, with expected availability set for 2017.

The Nozomi C18000 can reach speeds of up to 75 linear metres (246 linear feet) per minute, producing up to 9,000 80 x 60-cm boards per hour using what EFI describes as a double-lane printing feature. EFI explains it prints up to seven colours, including white, at a 360 x 720-dpi resolution, and can handle materials of up to 1.8 x 3 metres – and thicknesses up to triple-wall board – at full rated speeds.

Its LED, continues EFI, can image on just about any board substrate, including traditional Kemi, model, bleach and kraft materials. Packaging produced with the press, according to the company, is certified for repulpability and recyclability.
 
“The focus EFI has placed in R&D to improve every part of the digital production chain results in a unique, breakthrough and innovative offering that we are very excited to present at the world’s largest printing tradeshow,” said Guy Gecht, EFI’s CEO. “The breakthrough new platforms we are showing for the first time could be game changers for customers as the world moves from long runs to customized, on-demand manufacturing.”

At drupa, EFI is also showcasing its new AquaEndure inkjet technology that the company explains will be used across many of its platforms and segments in the future. The water-based inkjet platform runs and cures inks which EFI describes as requiring much less heat, enabling a wider range of media. AquaEndure inks also have no odour, explains EFI, and are aimed at markets like wall coverings, wraps and flexible signage. The system is expected to launch in 2017 with expanded media types and capabilities suitable for food-contact packaging following after that.

EFI is also exhibiting its new Fiery XB digital front end (DFE) platform, a scalable, high-volume blade server technology for high-speed inkjet presses, as well as Fiery Navigator, a cloud-based print management platform for Fiery-driven production presses. The company also introduced new software in the EFI Corrugated Packaging Suite and the EFI Publication Suite.
At drupa 2016, HP today unveiled the new PageWide C500 Press and an Indigo Combination Press, both of which are still under development.

The HP PageWide C500 Press, designed for corrugated direct-to-board printing, leverages 30 years of HP thermal inkjet technology and the company’s newer PageWide Printing Technology. HP explains the press will integrate into a standard production environment, from large integrated packaging converters with centralized or distributed printing, to small, independent sheet plants. HP plans to start testing the HP PageWide C500 Press at customer sites in 2017, and the press is expected to be commercially available in 2018.

At drupa, HP also previewed a new Indigo Digital Combination Press, for combination label production. The press concept will incorporate HP Indigo print and digital embellishments in one press, creating a single-pass solution for high-value labels and packaging production.

As part of a dedicated line with an HP Indigo WS6800 Digital Press, this new digital combination concept, developed in alliance with JetFX, will enable the production of digital spot and tactile varnishes, digital foils, as well as embellishments of virtually unlimited designs made possible using HP SmartStream Mosaic.
Xaar has launched its 1003 family of print heads aimed at industrial inkjet printing, which builds on the company’s preceeding Xaar 1002 and 1001 products.

Xaar explains the 1003 print head family introduces an important new feature called the XaarGuard, which provides nozzle plate protection and, coupled with other design innovations, achieves what the company states to be the longest maintenance-free production runs in the industry.  

The Xaar 1003 was produces with the company’s new X-ACT Micro Electric Mechanical Systems (MEMS) manufacturing process, which was recently awarded Manufacturing Site of the Year by the National Microelectronics Institute.

The Xaar 1003 family of print heads combines Xaar’s TF Technology and Hybrid Side Shooter architecture so that ink is recirculated directly past the back of the nozzle during drop ejection at high flow rates.  This helps the print head operates reliably even in the harsh industrial environments. Ink is in constant circulation, preventing sedimentation and subsequent blocking of the nozzles when jetting.

The Xaar 1003 will be available in three variants. The Xaar 1003 GS12 (rich colours or higher speeds) for ceramics applications is first to be launched, closely followed by the Xaar 1003 GS6 (for fine detail) and the Xaar 1003 GS40 (for special effects). The other variants for UV applications will also be available later in the first half of this year.
At drupa 2016, running from May 31 to June 10 in Düsseldorf, Germany, Xerox plans to launch two new inkjet presses, including the Xerox Brenva HD Production Inkjet Press and the Xerox Trivor 2400 Inkjet Press.

Targeting a production gap between high-end toner and low-end inkjet presses, the Xerox Brenva is a cut-sheet inkjet press that Xerox initially expects to disrupt light direct mail, transactional and book markets. 

The Brenva is to incorporate many of the paper-path components of the Xerox iGen press line, as well as an inline spectrophotometer to assist with calibration and profiling; object-oriented colour management to distinguish text, graphics and images; and a K-only mode to run as a cost-effective monochrome press.

The Xerox Trivor 2400 is a scalable continuous inkjet press initially targeting speeds of up to 551 feet (168 metres) per minute in colour and 656 feet (200 metres) per minute in monochrome. The small-footprint press will initially be targeted at catalogues, magazines and colour books. A new print server developed in partnership with EFI, the Xerox IJ Print Server powered by Fiery, will handle multiple data streams for various application types.

“We are focused on expanding our inkjet portfolio with more choices and greater capabilities for print providers to grow their businesses,” said Robert Stabler, Senior VP and GM, Global Graphic Communications Business Group, Xerox. “With the addition of Brenva and Trivor, we’re making inkjet more accessible and affordable to a larger number of print providers.”

Availability and list price for the Xerox Trivor 2400 with the Xerox IJ Print Server will be revealed at drupa. The Xerox Brenva HD will be available in Europe in May 2016 and in North America in September 2016. Shipments will begin in June 2016. The list price starts at US$649,000.
In late-February, Fujifilm introduced its next generation 54-cm-wide LED-UV inkjet press, built around the company’s new EUCON technology, for flexible packaging.

Fujifilm explains EUCON (Enhanced Under Coating and Nitrogen purging technology) is ideally suited for printing on the underside of flexible packaging. The proprietary EUCON technology in the new press is composed of three core components: a newly developed, high performance UV ink; a unique undercoating technology used to prevent ink bleed; and a Nitrogen purge technology, which is used to significantly reduce the characteristic odour of UV ink.  

Fujifilm’s new LED-UV inkjet press is currently working with a productivity level of up to 50 metres per minute using CMYK + White ink channels. LED-UV curing reduces the heat applied to flexible substrates.

The ink used in the new LED-UV press takes advantage of technologies developed for Fujifilm’s wide format applications, with enhanced adhesive strength for film that prevents peeling or cracking of the ink even when the print surface is heated. EUCON applies a new primer as an undercoat before depositing the CMYKW ink, which reduces ink bleed and better enables colour reproduction.
At drupa 2016, Canon plans to highlight its new continuous feed inkjet press Océ ColorStream 6000 Chroma, aimed at commercial printing, which features the company’s new Chromera ink set for stronger colour fidelity, wider gamut and higher optical densities.

The high pigment load of the Chromera inks, explains Canon, extends the application range of the press to lighter weight media with reduced ink show-through, and allows for printing higher quality documents on uncoated or inkjet treated papers.

“The new Océ ColorStream 6000 Chroma establishes a new level of colour vibrancy and underlines Canon’s leading position in continuous feed inkjet technologies for production print, with a line-up of high performance presses for business communications, publishing and commercial print applications,” said Christian Unterberger, Executive Vice President, Océ Printing Systems GmbH.

The new press builds on Canon’s ColorStream 3000 and ColorStream 3000 Z printing systems, which the company describes as holding paper waste-free print start and pause and a smart post-processing interface for the printing of short-run books with variable page lengths without rebooting. Océ HeadSafe technology allows for switching between mono and full-colour printing.

A new ‘pre-fire’ function on the ColorStream 6000 Chroma press is designed to provide consistent droplet size and positioning, ultimately leading to smooth ink coverage for large areas of dense colour. Canon explains this technology makes the press suitable for demanding commercial print applications.

The ColorStream 6000 Chroma model offers running speeds from 48 metres per minutes to 127 metres per minute in full colour mode. For monochrome work, there is an optional maximum speed of 150 metres per minute.

Shipments of the new ColorStream 6000 Chroma series are scheduled to begin in autumn 2016.
Kodak at drupa 2016, running from May 29 to June 10 in Germany, plans to debut a range of new technologies, including its next generation inkjet platform called Ultrastream, a new NexPress ZX3900 press, cloud-based software packages, and new Sonora offset printing plates, among other technologies.

Ultrastream, built on Kodak’s continuous inkjet Stream technology, is aimed at moving production inkjet into the mainstream of commercial and packaging printing. It will be showcased for the first time at drupa 2016, in an 8-inch configuration for label production, and feature what Kodak describes as a smaller drop size and precise placement accuracy for higher resolution, clean lines and additional detailed definition.

Ultrastream technology will co-exist in the market along with Stream Technology to offer different platform options. Ultrastream’s writing system includes a modular print head that can be implemented in varying widths ranging from eight inches up to 97 inches suit different applications. Kodak explains it produces 600 x 1,800-dpi resolution at speeds of up to 150 meters per minute (500 feet per minute) on a variety of paper and plastic substrates.

Ultrastream technology, with a planned launch for early 2017, will co-exist in the market along with Stream Technology to offer different platform options.

At drupa 2015, Kodak, for the first time, will also showcase a new cloud-based software approach under the banner of Unified Workflow Solutions, which includes Kodak Prinergy, Insite Prepress Portal, Colorflow, Pandora Step-and-Repeat Software, and Preps imposition software.

“Kodak created the workflow automation software market with the launch of Prinergy Workflow in 1999,” said Allan Brown, Vice President and General Manager of Kodak’s Unified Workflow Solutions. “Today we continue to push the boundaries of our current offering and take it to the next level with our cloud-based features.”
 
The new NexPress ZX3900 toner-based press will also be running at drupa, with a delivery date aimed for early 2017. It supports thicker paper and the use of synthetic substrates, which can be leveraged for short-run packaging applications like labels, tags and small folding cartons, as well as differentiated commercial and publishing products.

In conjunction with the NexPress ZX3900, Kodak also plans to preview a new NexPress platform that has not yet been unveiled. There will also be a new Opaque White Dry Ink for NexPress presses for its Fifth Imaging Unit.

At drupa 2016, Kodak will also announce a new Sonora process-free plate that can be used for UV printing. “By growing the Sonora Plate family to encompass UV, we are helping a broader population of our print customers to be more profitable, productive and sustainable into the future,” said Richard Rindo, GM Worldwide Offset Print and VP Print Systems Division, Kodak.

Kodak will also showcase its new Aqua-Image Pressroom Chemicals at drupa 2016, which is to include over 20 press washes, plate cleaners, ink roller maintenance chemicals and storage gums.
Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG announced it is extending its digital printing portfolio for drupa 2016 with a world premiere of B1-format, inkjet-based system called Primefire 106.

The inkjet technology was built leveraging Heidelberg’s offset technology and the inkjet developments of Fujifilm. Heidelberg explains its core competencies of technologies like non-contacting paper sheet guide, feeder and delivery are incorporated into the system. Primefire 106 is aimed at short to medium production runs.

“With the world premiere of the Heidelberg Primefire 106 we have reached another milestone in our digital strategy: achieving success in working with partners to bring systems to the market within the shortest time,” Stephan Plenz, Member of the Management Board and responsible for Heidelberg Equipment. “This will help our customers to address the increased market challenges in a digitized world in the future also.

“Now we are the first provider to enable the industrial and integrated production of digital printed products in the Smart Print Shop,” continued Plenz. “At the same time, in doing so we are also opening up opportunities for the future growth of Heidelberg.”

World premiere of the “Fire” product line: Heidelberg introduces a standardized portfolio name for its entire digital printing offering

As of drupa 2016, Heidelberg will introduce its entire digital printing portfolio under a standardized product line name, called Fire. “The name Fire for our digital printing portfolio stands for performance, dynamism and growth – and also for digitally transmitting data and ink onto different surfaces,” said Jason Oliver, Head of the Digital Division at Heidelberg. “We want to send a clear message to our customers that we have one of the highest performance digital printing offerings in our industry.”

As a result, the Heidelberg digital printing portfolio will have the following structure as of drupa 2016: Primefire 106; Versafire CP/CV is the new name for the existing Linoprint CP/CV digital printing systems (launched in cooperation Ricoh in 2011); Gallus Labelfire 340 is the new product name for the former Gallus DCS 340 for digital label printing; and Omnifire 250/1000 is the new name for Heidelberg’s 4D printing systems, replacing the former name Heidelberg Jetmaster Dimension 250/1000.
Page 1 of 4

Subscription Centre

 
New Subscription
 
Already a Subscriber
 
Customer Service
 
View Digital Magazine Renew

Most Popular