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DuPont Packaging Graphics (www.dupont.com) recently held its biennial Flexographic Printing and Technical Seminar in Moscow. The event was organized with 3M Industrial Tapes and Adhesives Division and Esko Graphics, and attracted more than 150 attendees from more than 70 companies.
“The theme of the seminar this year was ‘Quality Worth Examining Closer’ and it seemed to have broad and strong appeal,” says Gerold Zadorov, Eastern Europe sales supervisor, DuPont Packaging Graphics. “The attendees included managers and technical leaders across the value chain, from major trade shops to flexible packaging converters and tag and label producers. We were very pleased with the audience and their level of interest in innovative technologies in flexo, such as DuPont™ Cyrel® DigiFlow and new Cyrel® DSP plates that can help them advance the level of quality, productivity and sustainability in their operations.”
There was keen interest among attendees and the discussions were lively. Interest was especially high in the choices now available in flexo technology including the option of engineered surface plates or modified workflows with new exposure units. Both options have a fit in already-established workflows and give qualitative leaps in solid ink densities (SID). In addition to higher SID, there is a significant reduction in visual graininess that improves the appearance of the solids and overall visual contrast of the printed results.
Pascal Thomas, Digital Flexo product manager at Esko, presented a large range of advanced Flexo solutions that encompass HD Flexo for smooth vignettes down to zero, clean line work, and improved ink lay down, as well as Pixel+ for higher solid ink density. Besides, he outlined the power of full HD-Flexo, which combines Inline UV2 (digital main exposure inside Cyrel® Digital Imager/CDI) and HD Flexo.
“I was very impressed with the size and the audience,” says Thomas. “The Russian flexo printing industry is technically very skilled and highly interested in increasing printing quality. That was evident during the DuPont/Esko/3M seminar in Moscow. Esko presented its newest development in HD flexo (High Definition Flexo) as well as flat top technology and Pixel+ to enhance solids when using a partnering flat top workflow. We received a good number of detailed and technical questions related to our presentation and solutions.”
Yaroslav Khodataev, technical service supervisor at 3M Russia, explained the broad range of performance mounting tapes by 3M, and presented the new class of automatic splicer tape. Moreover, he announced, that the Cushion Mount™ tapes by 3M are now certified for HD Flexo. Cushion Mount tapes are designed for mounting flexographic print plates to cylinders or sleeves. This family of foam mounting tapes provides excellent print quality for process, combination and solid printing.
“The global flexo market is at a very interesting stage in its development,” says Khodataev. “A number of novel technologies are appearing providing great opportunity to our customers to increase quality, productivity and competitiveness. The event reconfirmed the high interest of our customers in new innovations. The 3M strategy is to work with its customers on the leading edge of market development, and the joint printing experiments we conducted provided us with very interesting and sometimes even surprising results which help us to understand how 3M tapes influence quality of printing by flat top dots and microstructured solids. These data and analysis will allow our customers to maximize effect of novel plate technologies from DuPont and Esko through optimal mounting tape selection.”
The organizing team appreciated the successful collaboration, and extended its special thanks to Gammaflex who provided their facilities and top-level specialists for the joint printing experiment that was central to the event.