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NP Druck cuts costs, gets greener with KODAK TRILLIAN SP Thermal Plate

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Press release from the issuing company

La Hulpe, Belgium - NP Druck, the print shop of Niederösterreichisches Pressehaus in St. Pölten (Lower Austria), is enjoying a raft of business benefits after switching to the new KODAK TRILLIAN SP Thermal Plate. The company has cut costs, saved time and created a far more environmentally responsible print infrastructure after introducing Kodak's latest digital plate innovation.

NP Druck offers a very broad portfolio of commercial printing products. Its product range centers on the end-to-end production of catalogs, brochures, flyers, magazines and inserts. The company produces mainly in heatset web offset on two 48-page web presses, as well as one 32 and one 16-page press, each equipped with four double printing units. NP Druck's large printing capacity – which is supplemented by a five-color sheetfed offset press in 3B format – and its three-shift production timetable account for the company's high plate consumption.

Delivering commercial advantages
NP Druck was one of the first printers in Europe to upgrade its production process to the new KODAK TRILLIAN SP Thermal Plate. Prepress Manager Doris Fehringer explains the company's decision to introduce the new plate: "We've always used negative-working thermal plates since we first went over to CTP a decade ago. We were on the verge of migrating our entire operation to positive because we wanted to get rid of the preheaters when Kodak introduced us to its new thermal plate.

"After carrying out a few tests at our own premises, we started using the TRILLIAN SP Plate on our newest CTP line at the end of April – and since the middle of May, we've not used anything else. We can safely predict that we're going to save a lot of money now that we've eliminated the energy-intensive preheating process. And our chemical consumption has fallen dramatically, plus we spend much less time on cleaning. The TRILLIAN SP Plate has delivered these very important advantages without any compromises elsewhere – in terms of quality or run lengths, for example."

In addition to two older KODAK TRENDSETTER VLF QUANTUM Platesetters, NP Druck also owns a fully automatic KODAK MAGNUS VLF 5570 QUANTUM Platesetter in the X-speed version with a Multi Cassette Unit and online plate processor. The high sensitivity of the TRILLIAN SP Plate (75mJ/cm2) is crucial, especially when it comes to the fully automatic CTP system. It helps unleash the full power of the MAGNUS VLF Platesetter, which is used for around 80% of all plates produced on the site. In combination with the dual-plate loading option (parallel loading of two plates for the 16-page web offset press), it increases the productivity of the large-format equipment to 47 plates an hour.

Fast, reliable and improved environmental footprint platemaking
Several improvements facilitated by the new plate are revealed in the automatic processing process, through which the TRILLIAN SP Plate races at a rate of 1.5 m/min: "We used to need 150ml of replenisher per square meter. The developer for the new plate dispenses with anti-ox replenishment, so we can now manage with just 50ml per square meter," Fehringer continues. "And the TRILLIAN SP Plate extends the bath cycle life enormously. In the past, we had to replace the chemistry and clean the entire plate processor every weekend. We're now aiming for a cycle life of three weeks, though we have to change the filter once every three days. The benefits for the environment and the associated cost savings are immense."

Fehringer has been very impressed with the robustness of the new thermal plate, and its smooth and stable on-press performance. NP Druck traditionally bakes every single plate because its print runs regularly total 1.2 million copies. Up to 500,000 impressions have so far been produced with the TRILLIAN SP Plate without any noticeable changes to the plate sets, and without any plate wear-related image degradation. Fehringer concludes: "In view of our large order volumes, this has been a pivotal factor in the plate's success here at NP Druck."

The vision of bypassing the baking step for the majority of orders – and further reducing energy consumption – could soon become a reality.




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