Agfa releases new Energy Verve preheat printing plate

Print Industry News

Energy Verve is a preheat offset printing plate that achieves run lengths of up to one million copies without baking, and was developed to handle particularly demanding printing conditions and environments. The new plate is a negative-working, preheat, photopolymer offset printing plate targeted at heatset web (e.g. magazines and retail), coldset web (e.g. newspapers and books), as well as packaging and commercial sheetfed printers that typically deal with highly demanding and abrasive print conditions with oxidative and UV inks. Due to its high chemical and mechanical resistance, Energy Verve can handle print runs up to a million copies, as previously mentioned. In addition, its high sensitivity and non-ablative photopolymer layer maximizes plate throughput of the platesetter.

Iris Bogunovic.

Agfa added that, since Energy Verve replaces the post-bake oven with a preheat module requiring a lower temperature, it also reduces a printer’s energy consumption by up to 50%, and service costs by up to 65%. In addition, plate waviness or cracking issues will disappear and the preheating module’s footprint is smaller than that of a post-bake oven. “Heatset printers are struggling with ways to increase efficiency and to decrease costs. In particular, they are torn between the wish to get rid of their baking oven, and the frustration that the run length of non-baked plates is not fulfilling their expectations,” said Iris Bogunovic, Product Manager of Plate & CTP Systems at Agfa. “Energy Verve is the perfect middle ground between post-bake and non-bake, offering high run lengths in combination with both process-efficiency and cost-efficiency.”

Thomas Billiet.

High on-press performance. One of the key cost drivers for heatset printers are paper web breaks, which can occur more frequently using lightweight paper or multiple-format changes. Energy Verve’s specific design eliminates web breaks. “The main cause of web breaks is that the paper gets soaked by the excessive use of a dampening solution used during printing to obtain a high-quality print,” said Thomas Billiet, R&D Project Manager at Agfa. “The deeply grained aluminum substrate of Energy Verve provides an excellent ink/water balance and enables printers to use a minimum of water and achieve more stable print conditions, thus eliminating web breaks.” Bogunovic added: “Web breaks can occur multiple times a day, with an average press downtime of at least half an hour per occurrence. Taking into account the cost of damaged blankets, washing, paper and ink waste too, a single paper break easily costs between 500 and 1,000 Euros per interruption. Reducing web-break frequency slao leads to enormous productivity gains as well as cost savings.”

Part of the OEM’s ECO³ initiative. Energy Verve is part of Agfa’s ECO³ approach, that consists of a wide range of hardware, software, consumables and services that make printing operations cleaner, more cost-effective and easier to manage and maintain.

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