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FLEXO Magazine : May 2014
Wider Color Space With License Free Multi Color System EISLINGEN, Germany—Color is significant in branding. Therefore, manufacturers of branded goods attach great importance to well defined color reproduction with the widest possible color range for packaging design. For that purpose, many systems with an extended color space have been de- veloped, for which licenses have been offered in the market under a variety of names for many years. Well known examples are Hexachrome, Spotless, ederMCS, FMsix, etc. These multi color systems normally use in addition to the four process colors (CMYK), two or three additional colors (OGV) and most- ly require adaptions in color separation. At Labelexpo Europe 2013 in Brussels, a group of companies from the flexo printing industry presented a multi color system which is aligned with narrow web printing and which can be used by printing operations without a license: • Anilox roller manufacturer Apex Europe bv • Repro company Athena Graphics NV • Printing press manufacturer MPS Systems bv • Printing ink manufacturer Zeller+Gmelin GmbH & Co. KG COMPATIBLE WITH DIGITAL TONER PRINTING Due to its compatibility with digital printing, the 7-color system offers users another important advantage. This was achieved by adapting the system to the toner inks of popular digital printing systems. For this purpose, Zeller+ Gmelin has specifically developed a special ink series based on the UVAF- LEX series whose individual colors have been adjusted to CMYKOGV of digital printing. The inks use as a basis the well known mono pigmented mixing system of Zeller+Gmelin which allows for particularly pure colors and an intensive color reproduction in printing. Moreover, they are available in a low migration version. With the new 7-color system, printers can spontaneously switch from digital printing to UV flexo or UV offset printing in the case of longer printruns and thus take advantage of these conventional printing processes with respect to profit- ability and color stability with increasing volumes of orders. A prerequisite is a certain standardization of individual process parameters. As a result, users benefit thanks to significantly lower downtimes. COORDINATED PRODUCTION PARAMETERS In addition to the UV flexo printing inks, even more parameters in the process chain have to be standardized in order to guarantee an accurate color reproduction in day to day production. Here, the project partners from the fields of prepress and repro as well as mechanical engineering and anilox rollers come into play. Athena contrib- uted the design of the labels and color separation. The production was carried out on an MPS EF 410 at a printing speed of 394 fpm (120 mpm). For the use of the system, press models are recommended which feature a high level of automation and very good regis- tration accuracy, promoted by precision servo drives. The quartet is completed by anilox rollers that, for such a print performance, ensure an ink transfer rate which is as accurate and constant as possible over the entire production. Anilox rollers from Apex were used for the printed samples. The partners held a seminar on April 8 at Apex. It was aimed primarily at companies producing labels, tags or packaging on narrow web UV flexo or UV offset printing machines. The seminar participants were shown how the “Fruit Berry ” project was developed and which prerequisites for the use of the system are required. Furthermore, how the system can be integrated into the environment of a label or packaging printer was also explained. MAY 2014 | FLEXO 21