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Ink Key Presetting in Offset Printing Presses Using Digital Images of the Plates
Linköping University, Department of Science and Technology.
2002 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree)Student thesis
Abstract [en]

During a make ready in a web offset press it is important to produce as little waste as possible. Reducing the amount of waste yields savings of both time and money. One way to do faster make ready is to preset the ink keys of the press before it is started.

This diploma work, carried out at Sörmlands Grafiska Quebecor AB in the city of Katrineholm, Sweden, examines how the ink key preset may be done using low- resolution digital images stored in the vendor independent data format CIP3 PPF. The press that has been used has a control interface that is not accessible from the outside. This feature is shared with a lot of older presses. Therefore several methods of how to present and collect ink key settings using offline methods have been tested.

To investigate the relationship between mean coverage over one ink zone and its corresponding ink key opening data from a 32-page web offset press has been collected. The mean coverage was taken from the CIP3 PPF files that were related to the collected print jobs.

The relationship that was found between the coverage and the opening can be described with a transfer curve (one curve per printing unit and side). Using as few as three print jobs of high quality (density and dot gain within given tolerances) a first set of transfer curves may be created. These are close to the real ones and using print jobs where the ink key presettings have been calculated the transfer curves may be calibrated to perform better and better presetting calculations. To generate and calibrate the transfer curves and to extract the mean coverage values from the CIP3 PPF files and recalculate these to presetting values a computer program called IKPS (Ink Key Presetting System) was made. IKPS was made using MATLAB from MathWorks INC.

IKPS have been tested for ink key presetting during a number of print jobs. Even though the transfer curves were uncalibrated the system performed well. As comparison the results from a plate scanner was used. Even if online transfer of the presetting values is preferable the big advantage with the IKPS is that it is an offline system and therefore it is possible to implement it on any kind of offset press, old as well as new. In order to generate reliable transfer curves the print jobs used for calibration must be of high printing quality and representative for that particular press. How the ink key presettings are presented in the press control room depends on what kind of press it is. IKPS works with CIP3 PPF files as well as low-resolution cmyk tiff files.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Institutionen för teknik och naturvetenskap , 2002. , 56 p.
Keyword [en]
Datorteknik, Printing, make-ready, ink-key, preset, CIP3, PPF
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Computer Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-1924ISRN: LITH-ITN-MT-EX--02/001--SEOAI: diva2:19251
Available from: 2003-08-18 Created: 2003-08-18

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