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FLEXO Magazine : April 2011
BREAKTHROUGH TECHNOLOGY Let it flow. The breakthrough idea behind the UniFlexGTT revolution is our patented slalom channel surface geometry which radically improves the hydraulic behavior of ink. Because the ink now flows in a precisely- engineered curved channel and is no longer captured and trapped in a confining cell, less blade and plate pressure is required for the ink to release more efficiently to the printing plate. Conventional anilox cup geometry creates aeration and turbulence within the ink structure at doctoring. Stressed ink and cell land areas force uneven plate inking in conventional anilox geometry. Deep conventional anilox cells trap ink while cell wall surface mass reduces ink area. Gtt channels are 40-60% shallower and land mass is reduced by 66% for greater ink surface area. Gtt slalom channels reduce ink stress at the doctoring phase for a more controlled ink-to-plate transfer. Gtt open geometry allows calmed ink to transfer evenly and consistently. Shallower Gtt slalom channels enable ink to flow along the blade path, reducing stress. iNK VESSEL GEOmETRY cOmPARiSON BLADE DIRECTION CROSS-SECTION OF ANILOX ANILOX SURFACE PRINTING PLATE iNK DOcTORiNG cHARAcTERiSTicS cOmPARiSON CROSS-SECTION OF GTT BLADE DIRECTION PRINTING PLATE GTT SURFACE i NK-TO-PLATE TRANSFER c HARAc TERi STicS c O m PARi SON GEOMETRY UNiFLEXGTT SLALOm iNK cHANNEL GEOmETRY imPROVED HYDRAULic FLOw SETS YOUR iNK FREE The elimination of hex cell enclosed cups means ink turbulence and aeration (known as “ink stress” or “foaming”) are relieved, resulting in a more controlled ink transfer for stronger, smoother solids and cleaner dots. Furthermore, this open-ended channel design removes 66% of the non- inked cell-wall “land” area of a conventional anilox design meaning still more inked surface area is evenly exposed to the plate, thus maximizing uniform plate inking. And since the channel is 40-60% shallower than a conventional hexagonal cell, less ink volume and lower viscosities are required at the critical kiss-point of ink-to-plate transfer, meaning you can run thinner inks while achieving jaw-dropping density on solids and dots. Also minimized are mottling, pinholing and dot gain. Smooth operator. In another first, Apex employs a new low-power, high-efficiency laser engraving process to eliminate the problems of rough, uneven ceramic recast caused by the unavoidable jackham- mer effect of conventional pulse lasers creating closed cells. Because our laser is always “on,” the walls and floor of the ink channels created by the laser ablation are consistently smoother and more uniform. Count on superior ink release. Competitor YAG pulse laser leaves uneven recast throughout the cell engraving. Inferior channel surfacing results from pulse laser engraving. Competitor pre- engraving porosity of conventional ceramic layer typically ranges from 2% to 15%. constant Beam laser technology surgically removes the ceramic, revealing smooth and even channels time after time. Apex ultra-dense ReleasAll V1500 ceramic porosity is less than 1% before engraving. 80/20 molecular hybrid ceramic lowers surface energy for better ink release. REi NVENTi NG INK TRANSFER Three key innovations define the GTT revolution in ink metering: surface geometry, ceramic composition and laser engraving. LASER ENGRAVING CERAMIC cONSTANT BEAm LASER ENGRAVi NG ABLATiNG A cONSiSTENT, PREciSE cHANNEL RELEASALL V1500TM HiGH-DENSiTY NON-wETTiNG cERAmic SUPERHARD HYBRi D cERAmic TROUNc ES POROSi TY cERAmic POROSiTY cOmPARiSON Real slick. Real hard. UniFlexGTT’s “non-wetting” hybrid ceramic composition – ReleasAll V1500 – is formulated to provide the highest-density, hardest and most ink-repellent surface layer available. While conventional ceramic is 99% pure Chromium Oxide (CrO2), our GTT hybrid uses 80% pure CrO2 and adds 20% Titanium Dioxide particles to lower the ceramic’s surface energy. Structural pores and voids all but vanish to produce an ultrahard layer (1500 Vickers rating) that controls and releases ink like no one else. Count on easier cleaning, greater score-line and damage resistance, not to mention near-complete ink release. ENGRAViNG LASER BEAm APPLicATiON cOmPARiSON FOLD FOLD APEX Covers/Flaps 3-11.indd 2 3/29/11 4:48:41 PM