Asahi Photoproducts: Pinning Top Dot digital flexo plate technology
Magnified image of Pinning Top Dot plate after printing with no ink remaining (Source: Asahi Photoproducts)
BELGIUM • Asahi Photoproducts has launched a digital photopolymer flexo plate technology with a special pinning top dot. A feature of both Asahi’s solvent-washable TOP and water-washable AWP plates, the company claims that its Pinning Top Dot technology (PDT) enables a clean ink transfer and prevents ink accumulating on the plate surfaces and shoulders in screen areas. This leads to fewer cleaning intervals and reduced downtime.
The Pinning Dot Technology allows a kiss-touch printing pressure setting. It makes use of low plate surface tension, made possible by a polymer chemistry, to inhibit liquid flow. The ink forms a globule, with a large contact angle and high pinning point.
According to Asahi Photoproducts; “the higher pinning point allows reduced printing pressure throughout the printing run, regardless of ink set used. This leads to lower dot gain, especially in the highlight areas, as well as smooth and soft vignettes fading out to zero with a wider total colour gamut. The lower pressure also allows longer plate life.”
Dr. Dieter Niederstadt, Technical Marketing Manager, Asahi Photoproducts Europe, comments: “The arrival of the PTD plate range is ideal for applications such as high-end flexible packaging, where premium, pristine point-of-sale presentation is essential. It enables brand-owners and retailers to achieve the consistent, high standards normally associated with gravure and, at the same time, benefit from the relatively low ownership costs of the flexo process.”
Suited for solvent, water and UV-based inks as well as high-quality film and coated paper substrates, Asahi’s PTD plates offer a resolution of 80 l/cm (200 lpi), minimum isolated dot of 150 µm micron, and is available in thicknesses of 1.14mm (shore A hardness 77) and 1.70mm (shore A hardness 69). It is compatible with all commonly available laser types, as well as the latest high-definition microcell screening technology.