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FLEXO Magazine : October 2012
Cross section shows the integrated compressible layer. It’s ideal for water- or solvent-based UV/EB curing ink systems. propylene diene monomer (M-class) (which we all know by now as EPDM) rubber layer. This rubber has a hardness of 65° Shore A and a surface roughness (Rz) value of 7.0 μm. It is available in thicknesses of 0.76 - 2 .84 mm. Featuring a unique integrated compressible layer, this plate does away with the need for expensive foam adhesive mounting tapes. The compressible layer ensures a good seal as well as high impact resilience (no material fatigue in the base) on the printing machine. On high-speed machines in particular, this represents a considerable advantage, guaranteeing a stable and even ink transfer during the printrun. This flexo plate: • Can be directly engraved by fiber or CO2 laser • Shows extremely high engraving resolution • Enables the creation of optimized dot profiles (undercut, flat top dots, round top dots, etc.) • Is dimensionally-stable (no shrinkage) • Facilitates no plate swelling • Gives a consistently sharp impression during printing • Reduces press chatter, typical of integrated compressible layers • Enables optimal transfer of water and solvent-based printing inks, as well as UV curable inks • Offers the possibility to print halftone and solid inks together • Demonstrates optimum ink laydown • Gives better control of tonal values • Reduces halo and doughnut effects • Requires far less cleaning on press • Has a substantually longer service life Laserline CSX—The all-round CSX plate for printing flexible packaging and labels consists of a black EPDM rubber layer, as described above (CSC). This one does not have the compressible layer, but retains all the features and benefits which are attributed to the CSC series. Laserline CCX—Developed specially for printing onto corrugated board, the CCX has a peel-off styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR) surface, as well as an integrated compressible layer. This helps to minimize any washboard effect on all of the most commonly used types of corrugated board. Similar to the CSC, the compressible layer also does away with the need for expensive foam adhesive tapes. It is supplied in material thicknesses of 2.84 - 4.20 mm. The gray SBR cover layer and engraving layer have a hardness of 35° Shore A and a surface roughness (Rz) of 12 μm. Similar to the CSC and CSX, this printing plate is dimensionally stable and demonstrates consistently sharp impression quality, ideal ink transfer—particularly for water-based inks—and high- resolution engraving. Laserline CSL—Specially designed for lacquer coating applications, the CSL plate features an integrated “peel-off ” layer optimized for this purpose. The Laserline CSL is suitable for all solvent-based, water-based and UV curing coating systems. This plate does not have the compressible layer. SUSTAINABLE KEYSTONE Engineering green value is the guiding principle behind sustainability. Environmental and climate protection as well as sustainable business activities for the benefit of present and future generations are paramount keystones the world over. Roll material is, therefore, manufactured to the highest tolerances and quality specifications. Various steps in produc- tion utilize a new calendar technology. Commensurate with green value principles, this new technology is completely solvent-free – setting it apart from the conventional, which is both complex and problematic. Composition and hardness of the elastomer material and the surface finish of the roll material are harmonized for direct engraving and flexo printing. n Editor’s Note: ContiTech Elastomer Coatings, a subsidiary of Continental AG, based in Northeim, Germany, one of the world’s leading companies in the field of rubber and plastics technology, contributed the above article to FLEXO Maga- zine’s 3rd Annual Plate/Platemaking/Sleeve Selection Guide. ContiTech, which has extensive experience in the manufac- ture of offset print blankets, has developed a new industrial process for manufacturing flexo printing plates as roll goods. Product lines are market segment specific and include four classifications—CSC (with compressible layer for flex- ible packaging and labels), CSX for flexible packaging and labels, CCX (with compressible layer) for corrugated board and CCL for lacquer coatings. The company pledges to stay innovative and exhibit continuous dedication to supply the needs of the flexo market. Innovative product offerings in the development stage include a new form of flexo sleeves that it maintains will revolutionize conventional applications. About the Author: Armin Senne is business manager, flexo He has 20 years experience in flexo printing form manufacturing. He worked for Esko as service technician in the early 1990s, moved to Chicago to work for Schawk as technical director , was business manager at the Janoschka Group in Germany and is now working for Continental Contitech in Germany to develop the direct engraving market. www.flexography.org oCtoBEr 2012 FLEXO 59