QuadTech has achieved the 10,000th global sale of its MultiCam camera, after winning a deal to install register guidance and ribbon control technology on a new high-performance press at the Gütersloh (Germany) headquarters of Mohn media Mohndruck GmbH, a multinational commercial printing operation.
With a workforce of over 1700 and over 25 web presses, the Gütersloh plant is one of Germany’s largest offset printing houses, providing a total workflow solution for magazines, telephone directories, direct mail and promotional literature to customers across Europe.
The milestone achievement was part of an agreement to install 11 MultiCam cameras on Mohn’s new manroland Lithoman IV, a 2,250 mm-wide, 80-page web-press, with which the company plans to re-enter the brochure-printing market.
The new installation comprises two cameras on the web with QuadTech’s Register Guidance System—a closed-loop color-to-color register control system. Another nine cameras are integrated with the Ribbon Control System—to minimize lateral and circumferential error. The QuadTech systems offer unsurpassed performance for color-to-color registration and print-to-cut accuracy.
Mohn media’s working relationship with QuadTech began with retrofitting a number of existing presses with the Color Control System with Instrument Flight in 2005. This most recent installation of QuadTech’s Register Guidance and Ribbon Control Systems marks the 13th press at Mohn media to be outfitted with MultiCam.
“In the last six years, QuadTech’s MultiCam technology has a proven track record in ensuring optimum color consistency throughout the production run. With the installation on the new Lithoman IV, we have the assurance of offering consistent, high quality when running the press at extraordinarily high speeds,” said Jens Krüler, engineer at Mohn media.
Gerd Meder, Head of Deparent of Technology at Mohn media, adds “The utilization of MultiCam has been a big success for Mohn. We were able to noticeably increase production time and to decrease wastage.”
Unique Camera Design
Since its launch in 2004, the MultiCam camera has gained world-wide acclaim for its unique design, developed specifically for the job in hand. This means that it capitalizes on the advantages of convenience, price and accuracy provided by digital imaging technology, without the disadvantages seen in many competitors’ products that use ‘off-the-shelf’ camera technology.
The disadvantages of many ‘off-the-shelf’ camera systems include the restriction of the sensor’s field of vision to a small section of the printing cylinder, rather than scanning the entire circumference. This restriction reduces the volume of data from the sensor, so that data can be sequentially processed and allow the system to still deliver reasonable speeds.
MultiCam’s 640 x 480 pixel sensor harnesses specially designed FPGA-based hardware to enable multitasking of mark-recognition and other essential calculations. This approach allows the camera to view the entire repeat length of the web and cope with the volume of data generated. By doing so, the system can find marks more quickly, especially during periods of maximum register upset such as during a web splice.
Handling marks as small as 0.36 mm (0.014”), it can make up to 30 register mark searches per second. It is capable of operating at speeds of up to 17.8 m/sec (3,500 ft/min), equivalent to the Lithoman IV’s maximum speed, and ensures immediate recovery from web-tension upsets. Furthermore, LED lighting ensures long life and low maintenance.
Mohn media is also benefiting from another component of QuadTech’s ICON integrated platform: Data Central, an application that receives, manages, stores, and displays data in order to generate reports for monitoring and improving press and process performance. Data Central’s Color Print Curve Production Summary Report provides concise, easy-to-use job summary statistics together with tone value print curves for monitoring actual results of the entire color reproduction process.
“With immediate access to historic registration and color performance data, we can optimize the press so our clients are assured predictable, ‘what you see is what you get’ quality that is identical to the original files,” said Krüler.
Karl Fritchen, President of QuadTech, commented: “MultiCam is the first register camera of its kind to achieve such a significant level of market acceptance. The success is a testament to the ingenuity and unrelenting dedication of our research and development staff to building better value for our customers. Printers large and small need solutions that reduce costs and ensure higher quality—at a time when printing has never been so competitive. And clearly, MultiCam meets that need perfectly.”