The role of digital label printing is expanding, with brand owners demanding short runs, fast turnaround time, and value-added features. Nilpeter worked closely with B&R to develop its PANORAMA label printing and converting solution – based on the Nilpeter DP-3 print engine – which it launched at the 2015 Labelexpo Europe.
Recognizing digital differentiation
The PANORAMA label printing and converting solution uses single-pass UV ink technology. That means that ink is applied across the web in a single operation, rather than using a scanning process like a desktop printer. While there are fewer moving parts, the application – and curing – of individual colors takes place at different printing stations.
Proper placement of the web, both linearly and laterally, is essential to ensure accurate color registration. This also applies down the line to the print enhancements and diecutting. In fact, it grows more important at these later stages as the value of the label increases with each process. Meanwhile, Nilpeter believes that using UV-curable ink is the best solution for most label applications, it also understands that there is no universal digital printing technology, and converting processes may require a number of different technologies.
The label and package printing markets are extremely complex. “There is no winning technology that covers all applications,” says Jakob Landberg, director – sales and marketing, Nilpeter. “Nilpeter has always been an advocate of ‘combination printing’ and has spearheaded technologies that bring together all the different processes for optimum results. With PANORAMA, we can now deliver highly reliable and productive digital printing and finishing applications, using B&R’s systems, with results that meet brand-owners’ expectations.”
Ideal partner for inline synchronization
The Nilpeter PANORAMA is an inline solution that offers uninterrupted flow from raw substrate to finished label – complete with all the special features including numbering, flood coating or spot varnishing, (using flexo or screen printing), hot foiling, embossing and other enhancements, as well as final die-cutting and matrix removal. This combination of digital and mechanical (analog) processes calls for a high degree of control and automation, which is where B&R comes in.
“One of the strengths B&R brought to this project was its ability to deliver systems with real-time capability,” said Søren Ringbo, Nilpeter’s manager of digital products and PANORMA project manager. “This means that adjustments for register, web tension, positioning, and so on are instantaneous – without compromising productivity and quality.”
This is no small feat given the variety of optional equipment that can be used in the modular PANORAMA line, which can be set up as a rotary, semi-rotary or flatbed solution.