Industrial Digital Printing 2.0

By | March 9, 2010

Reporting live from a pre-IPEX media briefing in Brussesls.

In this morning’s lead-off presentation, Oliver C. Mehler, CEO, Atlantic Zeiser, announced that what he called “Industrial Digital Printing 2.0 is here”—and that with the help of his company’s technology, printers actually will make money doing it.

Atlantic Zeiser specializes in high-resolution digital printing and coding on industrial products. Its customers produce materials that frequently need content changes. “We don’t care about the substrate,” said Mehler, as the printable surface could be anything: paper, carton stock, non-porous materials such as plastic or glass, or three-dimensional structures. The conditions in which the printing is done vary greatly as well.

Mehler said that IDP 2.0 isn’t out to replace offset and flexo. These methods will still be used for static content; Atlantic Zeiser supplies the technology for the addition of variable print at the late stage of manufacturing: inline marking, coding, serialization, and decoration. Variable data must be verified for accuracy on the production line, as the printing is being applied to the product.

Atlantic Zeiser offers a choice of 18 different digital printing engines, including the ultra-high-speed and -resolution Delta family. Its Omega family consists of UV-capable spot color engines. The Gamma line includes single-pass CMYK engines with resolutions up to 1060 dpi.

The newest addition is the AZ Delta family of single-pass spot color engines operating at speeds up to 300 fpm in print widths up to 205 mm at a native resolution of 600 dpi. Also announced was the AZ line of high-resolution digital inks, including UV inks curable by LED arrays. To complement these inks, Atlantic Zeiser offers the Smartcure UV LED curing module. The advantages of UV curing include “cold light” exposure that protects sensitive materials; and ozone-free operation.

Among the applications for Atlantic Zeiser’s inline printing systems are packaging and direct product imprinting. ROI should take place between two and 18 months, says the company, thanks to economies achieved by integrating the systems with existing production lines. Packagers and product manufacturers now can do their own variable imprinting without having to rely on outside services.

Mehler also talked about VDP enhancement for PDF workflows. At IPEX, the company will announce a solution that makes it possible to print with small, flexible, and secure data streams.

For customers preferring offline solutions, Atlantic Zeiser offers the DigiLine family of web-to-web and sheetfed digital printing units for coding and imprinting. There are two models for web printing, and four or sheetfed. Three models of the DigiLine single-product imprinting system are available. Mehler spoke of imprinting costs of “several cents per thousand” with these solutions.

“We can prove that this increases the operating profits of any industrial product manufacturer,” Mehler said.

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