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LITHRONE GX40/LITHRONE GX40RP Packaging Open House

01 GLX640 Demo 01 DSC 3971The LITHRONE GX40 (GLX-640+C)/ LITHRONE GX40RP (GLX-840RP) Packaging Open House was held on Thursday, June 12, 2014, at Komori Corporation's Tsukuba Plant based on the theme 'Komori Packaging Solutions.' Held mainly for overseas customers, the event provided information to users interested in or considering a Lithrone GX40 or Lithrone GX40RP packaging press.

The open house consisted of a seminar, factory tour, printing demonstrations, and presentations on packaging markets by customers. After the event, a party was held at a nearby hotel. Some 96 visitors representing 59 companies from 17 countries participated in the event and experienced Komori's 'Packaging Solutions.'

At the beginning of the event, the visitors gathered in various seminar rooms in the Tsukuba Plant according to language. There, based on the 'Packaging Solutions' theme, they heard an explanation of trends in and the outlook for the overall printing industry, an introduction of corresponding Komori products (offset presses, Komori-Chambon machines, and digital printing systems), and a briefing on the functions and systems of the Lithrone GX40 and Lithrone GX40RP, which were specially specified for package printing.

■ Printing industry trends/outlook
・ Among the various segments of the printing industry (publishing, commercial, business forms, POP, packaging, other), packaging has the strongest future.
・ Annual growth of packaging in non-OECD countries is forecast to be 8.1 percent (2.1 percent in OECD countries).
■ Lineup of Komori package printing presses
・ Komori-Chambon machines (enabling in-line finishing such as die-cutting for paper cartons)
・ Sheetfed offset presses (packaging for food, pharmaceuticals and home products)
・ Impremia IS29 (inkjet digital printing system; 'coming soon')
・ Impremia Landa S40 (Nanography; schedule of future-oriented lineup)
■ Lithrone GX40 concept
・ High productivity on long runs with heavy stock by means of stable high-speed operation
⇒Highest operational productivity by high-speed operation at 18,000 sph stabilized by the latest control technologies and nonstop logistics
・ Seamless short makeready even with special colors
⇒In addition to being equipped with KHS-AI, the world's most advanced print start-up system, printing changeovers for flexible use of special colors are optimized and made very short by innovative new systems.
・ High print quality that meets the needs of deluxe printing
⇒High print quality meeting the requirements of deluxe printing by means of a new inking system that further evolves trusted Komori print quality
・ Wide range of machine configurations and specifications
⇒A diverse range of machine configurations for high added value printing and a solid lineup of print quality inspection equipment.
・ Reduced environmental footprint and high operability
⇒Advanced eco-friendly machine offering reduced paper waste and lower electrical power consumption
■ Technologies and systems that support package printing
・ K-ColorSimulator ('skill-less' color matching system; matches colors of color output device and offset press)
・ PQA-S (in-line inspection and density control)
・ Additional functions for package printing processes (matching with PDF data, masking setting)
・ Inkjet numbering system (traceability of inspection)
・ PDC-SX (color control/automatic register adjustment)
・ K-Station Ver. 4 (Printing Task Control Software)
■ Explanation of the points of the day's demonstrations
・ High-speed automatic nonstop operation for long runs
・ Workability improvements and shorter times for changeovers of short runs and color changeover tasks
・ Stable print quality at high speed (no color variation/circumferential shading/streaking/ghosting)
・ Solid lineup of inspection equipment (in-line inspection/comparison with PDF)
・ Double-sided printing on heavy stock

The seminar was followed by a tour of the Tsukuba Plant and lunch.

In the afternoon, the participants watched the demonstrations of the LITHRONE GX40 and LITHRONE GX40RP. Narration of the demonstrations of both machines was handled by Doug Schardt of Komori America, and the general MC was Yasuko Nakajima.

First, the visitors gathered in front of the LITHRONE GX40 (six-color 40-inch sheetfed offset press) and a commemorative photo was taken.

※ This photograph was output on the Impremia C80 installed in KGC (Komori Graphic Technology Center) and distributed for everyone to take home at the end.)

■ LITHRONE GX40 (GLX-640+C) demonstration
【Job 1】
・ Package printing of pharmaceuticals box (five colors plus varnish)
・ Stock: El Card 26.5 kg/Shiroku-han (1,050 x 750 mm); sheet thickness: 0.35 mm
・ Maximum printing speed: 18,000 sph
・ 500 sheets

The press performed initial package printing of pharmaceuticals boxes on 0.3 mm stock with plates that had been mounted in the press ahead of time, and after checking colors and register, the press printed 500 sheets at 18,000 sph without any adjustment. During the run, the measurement results from PQA-S, which has a color control function in addition to the print quality inspection function, were shown on the operation stand monitor (KID) for confirmation by the automatic feedback function.

【Job changeover】
・ Ink removing
・ Blanket washing/pre-inking
・ Full-APC (Fully Automatic Plate Changing)
・ Change of printing paper
・ Test printing
・ PDC-SX (register adjustment/color matching)
・ OK sheet

During job changeover after the printing of 500 sheets, the various systems that support improvement of package printing productivity were explained, starting with the KHS-AI (Advanced Interface) integrated control system. The Lithrone GX40 can be equipped with a variety of features that are effective for package printing. By linking the automatic devices on the press with KHS-AI-based systems, quick stable operation is possible and paper waste can be significantly reduced.

The narration also explained that by linking PDC-SX (color control/automatic register adjustment/Smart Feedback), which digitizes print quality and enhances high-level print quality control, and PQA-S (print quality inspection/color control) to KHS-AI, optimization of the printing process can be further advanced and the productivity of package printing can be dramatically improved.

※ Since these systems are all Komori-made, the flow of data to KHS-AI is richer than would be the case if similar systems were sourced from various other manufacturers.

【JOB2】
・ Package printing of confectionery boxes (five colors + varnish)
・ Stock: El Card 36 kg/ Shiroku-han (1,050 x 750 mm); sheet thickness: 0.45 mm
・ Maximum printing speed: 18,000 sph
・ 2,000 sheets

In the second job, 2,000 sheets of confectionery boxes were printed with heavy ink coverage on stock with a sheet thickness of 0.45 mm. Print quality inspection and density control by PQA-S were shown on the KID monitor, and small changes in densities could be confirmed in real time. In addition, production continuing at the maximum printing speed because the machine does not stop while the feeder and delivery both change piles by means of the automatic nonstop operation system was also shown.

After the demonstration on the GLX-640, the new control systems were explained.
<KHS-AI>
Since repeat jobs are frequently run in the packaging industry, in addition to air and register presets, by enhancing the linkage with PDC-SX and PQA-S, it is possible to quickly invoke settings that have been used in the past.
<PDC-SX>
Equipped with a color correction function that enables accurate feedback of special colors to meet the needs of package printing. Also, the Lithrone GX40 is equipped with a function that adjusts the image on the sheet to the correct position required for the die-cutting process.
※PDF comparison function
A PDC-SX option, this function captures the image on the printed sheet with image sensors for comparison with the originating PDF file data.
<PQA-S>
Sheets are numbered on the feeder board. A new function accurately recognizes the die-cutting data, and a system that performs print quality control in units of blanks has also been added.

After these explanations, the visitors moved to in front of the LITHRONE GX40RP (GLX-840RP), and the second demonstration of the day started.

■ LITHRONE GX40 (GLX-840RP) demonstration
【JOB1】
・ Package printing of gift boxes (front, four colors; back, two colors)
・ Stock: Sun Card 15.5 kg/K size; sheet thickness: 0.3 mm
・ Maximum printing speed: 16,500 sph
・ 400 sheets

The press performed initial package printing of gift boxes on 0.3 mm stock with plates that had been mounted in the press ahead of time, and after checking colors and register, the press printed 400 sheets at 16,500 sph without any adjustment. Also, measurement of the total time for two jobs was started as a 'time challenge.'

※The LITHRONE GX40RP is a 40-inch double-sided sheetfed offset press that uses an arrangement featuring single-edge gripping and the elimination of sheet reversal. Due to single-edge gripping, the margin on the tail edge of the sheet that is necessary with perfectors is not needed, so paper costs can be held down. Thanks to the cylinder configuration of four double-size transfer cylinders without sheet reversal, the press offers stable transport of paper with high print quality in package printing. In addition, both front and back plates are imaged in the same direction, just as with a single-sided straight press, so plate imposition and operation are very efficient.

【Job changeover】
・ Ink removing
・ Blanket washing/pre-inking
・ A-APC (Asynchronous Automatic Plate Changing)
・ Test printing
・ PDC-SX (register adjustment/color matching)
・ OK sheet

After the printing of 400 sheets, the press completed changeover automatically up to test printing using the Smart Sequence system of KHS-AI without any operator assistance. The GLX-840RP used the A-APC Asynchronous Automatic Plate Changing System for simultaneous changing of all plates at the same time; this press is an eight-color machine but all platechanging can be completed in 85 seconds even if the machine is configured with 10 or 12 colors. Then front/back register adjustment and color matching were performed and production printing was started. The time for the job change – from the end of the first job to the start of production printing for the second job – was just 3 minutes 19 seconds.

※Even if the densities are off, automatic feedback to the press by the PDC-SX color control function allows production printing to be started right away.

【JOB2】
・ Package printing of gift boxes (front, four colors; back, one color)
・ Stock: Sun Card 15.5 kg/K size; sheet thickness: 0.3 mm
・ Maximum printing speed: 16,500 sph
・ 400 sheets

In the second job, 400 sheets of confectionery boxes with heavy ink coverage were printed on paper with a sheet thickness of 0.3 mm. During the print run, the narrator explained the H-UV innovative curing system that was equipped on the press and the PQA-S Print Quality Assessment System that is mounted on two positions of the press for the front and back sides of the sheets. The total time for Jobs 1 and 2 in this demonstration was 8 minutes and 39 seconds.

※ PQA-S uses a high-precision camera and controls colors automatically by reading a color bar on the printed sheets that is photographed at the same time.

After both demonstrations were completed, visitors were able to freely inspect the machines.

Then all of the visitors returned to the seminar room, and four of the world's leading companies in the packaging industry provided presentations on the latest trends. A wide variety of topics were covered, from the latest trends in food packaging to plant design and global regulatory trends.

Finally the visitors boarded buses and moved to the Okura Frontier Hotel Tsukuba, where the party was held. The participants exchanged ideas on the day's event and happily chatted with enthusiasm about business models and the economic climate.

Komori is grateful that many people from all over the world took an interest in KOMORI packaging solutions and came to the open house. Perfectly equipped to meet a range of requirements, including an automatic nonstop operation system and control systems/automation for long runs at high printing speed, the LITHRONE GX40/ LITHRONE GX40RP presses will be a powerful presence in package printing in the years ahead. Count on Komori solutions for the future.
www.komori.co.jp

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