Bobst inkjet printing

A printing cluster changing label production

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Bobst
Bobst inkjet printing. Photo Bobst

The more high-tech you go, the more these criteria have to be made a reality – indeed, they are practically inseparable from each other, and the foundation for successful and sustainable innovations. Bobst has developed the Mouvent Cluster based on these exact principles.

In inkjet, utilizing the advancements of 3D printing technology, it is able to develop such a compact and effective printing device. A Mouvent Cluster is a unit comprising four inkjet heads and their ink control system, encapsulated in one very compact design. And compactness is not only a size advantage. It indicates that there are minimum moving parts, well-positioned internal elements and precise organized cables and connections.

Unique design logic brings unique advantages

Fewer moving parts mean less maintenance and less risk of failure. But the precisely positioned internal elements mean faster and more accurate temperature control and shorter distribution lines of fluids (less temperature loss and pressure equalization).

In addition, the embedded ink and temperature control units of the Mouvent Cluster follow a very simple architecture rule. Each unit is autonomous, and each inkjet head is controlled in a separate closed-loop, with its own individual pressure and temperature control systems.

This is a radical technology shift in the inkjet world, leading to full jetting control which provides total independence on the speed of printing, ink coverage or levels of details of the printed file.

The main advantage of controlling the ink in such a short distance from the jetting and in a closed-loop manner is the consistency of the ink drop size and the efficiency of the system in long production shifts.

It also enables the elimination of ink mist, absolute print head temperature control and uninterrupted production without the need for pauses to clean or cool down.

Connectivity is also a fundamental design principle for reliable performance. Performance is based on on-the-fly data analysis and algorithmic calculations, which leads to strong control and immediate adaptation.

Simply described, the cluster system has its own modular advanced intelligence to readapt when and where needed and at the same time is connected to a high-speed mainframe and image data stream.

The brain of the system, the electronics, is a fully programmable system. The system was built with a deterministic compute approach, scalable performance, low power consumption and functional safety considerations.

Updates and adaptations can take place directly on the press and triggered even by remote support engineers, ensuring that the technology will always deliver on its promise. So, Bobst Cluster technology is taking inkjet printing to the next level, opening new horizons in the packaging industry.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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