Focus on Industrial Print
The latest innovations in industrial printing have opened up possibilities in the production process that never previously existed
InPrint in Italy promises a revolution for industrial printing technology. Italy is Europe’s second largest manufacturing economy and Milan is a world-renowned design capital. In terms of industrial printing, the country has been an early adopter and a developer of new technology so, as a result, industrial sectors are thriving in a culture of collaboration and creativity. Décor, textile, ceramics, leather, glass, automotive and packaging, plus other industries are all enjoying a renewed emphasis on innovation as the market responds to changing demand and industrial printing continues to grow.
All the research conducted by IT Strategies and InPrint point towards accelerated growth for industrial print technology. It is a coalescence of consumer demand and technical innovation which is driving new opportunities for industrial print and, as such, the innovative Italian marketplace will provide added impetus and new opportunity for this sector. This year’s InPrint in Italy promises to be a key event in the development of industrial printing with a particular focus on décor printing.
The InPrint show itself has the vision of connecting new markets, creating new possibilities, and will unlock new opportunities for advanced print technology for manufacturing. Visitors attend from across different industries from automotive to packaging, and from pharmaceutical to sporting goods manufacturers, with the core driver being to source customised printing solutions for industrial applications.
The ceramics industry in Italy has been revolutionised by ink-jet and, in just five years, the ceramics market has shifted from analogue printing to digital – driven by demand for more flexibility and lower cost production. With the market centred primarily in two key regions in Europe, in Spain and Italy, this revolution was quick and comprehensive. This has led many to ask the question: “Which industrial decoration market will next tip to ink-jet?” Attending InPrint 2016 will provide further answers.
InPrint in Italy has many new exhibitors participating. A leader in ceramic print production, Gruppo Tecnoferrari will have a stand for the first time and has significant experience in developing single-pass ink-jet printing for ceramics and new décor applications.
In addition, System Group, another Italian based leader in industrial ink-jet single-pass technology, will make its début as a participant at InPrint 2016. Also a leader in ceramic print technology, this company will be connecting with new markets and opportunities across a range of décor printing at the event.
Italy’s Smartcolor is a new exhibitor at InPrint 2016. Its technology is based on the best roll-to-roll plotter re-engineered for industrial printing with systems that allow direct printing without pre-treatments on many materials. These include flat or slightly corrugated (5mm) such as wood, plastic, aluminium, ceramics, glass, cardboard and leather, providing a printing effect without thickness and with no odour, even with white ink. As with many exhibiting companies, the emphasis is on creating new print potential for fresh applications and markets such as crafts, fashion, industry, graphics and design.
SunJet is another leading ink company participating at InPrint 2016 and one which has also invested in the growing digital direct-to-surface décor segment. Phil Jackman explains how ink-jet is bringing something very new to this type of production which increases efficiency. “Ink-jet is an enabler in direct print as it is a non-contact printing process,” he states. "Traditional analogue printing works well onto paper but is more difficult onto hard surfaces. The combination of short run capability and the jettisoning of the supply chain become synergistic when printing direct to boards with ink-jet. My vision is that ink-jet will grow radically in the wood decoration industry.”
Canon Italia is another to participate, with a stand based on the possibilities available for industrial printing. Digital printing opens a world of new opportunities, even to companies that don’t know the potential or simply have never used it for interior decoration, furnishing, technical components and more, and all are now easily customisable with impressive decorations. Featuring on the stand will be applications presented by FPE | d'Officina, a technical partner which already uses Canon technology to produce interior applications, and more, for companies from many sectors. Visitors are welcome on the Canon stand to touch applications and discuss with FPE | d'Officina the wide range of application possibilities.
Packaging is the largest single sector within industrial print and the continued development for direct-to-shape is building interest from brand and retailers. Italy is a leader in the packaging arena and has a number of exhibiting companies with products focused on this segment.
InPrint exhibitor, Italian company Martinenghi, is located close to Milan. It has successfully launched the Michelangelo direct-to-shape ink-jet printing machine which can print direct onto a metal container. Likewise, German innovator Hinterkopf is another participant with leading direct-to-shape technology that is adding value to packaging production. Recent news from Ritter, one of the company’s key customers, is that the Hinterkopf machine is capable of printing onto sealant cartridges whilst matching the quality achieved by screen-printing.
Additionally, the energy reductions are considerable when printing with the D240 digital printing machine and Ritter has reported significant savings using 210 fewer metric tons of plastic per year, saving 15 metric tons of special waste, and 2.4 metric tons less waste such as old paints, paint residues and liquors. In terms of power, Ritter has reported savings of 450,000kWh of electrical power per year. In so doing, the company is reducing its CO2 emissions by 270 metric tons, proving the growing importance of industrial ink-jet.
ToneJet is also a leading direct-to-container print technology with a speciality for printing onto aluminium cans, proving popular in particular with the growing craft drinks market. With its nozzle-less print heads for industrial reliability, Tonejet’s digital printing technology is now opening up new opportunities for can printers and craft brewers alike, and contributing towards the growth of this exciting world-wide market.
It isn’t just the marketing benefits that are driving preference for cans. For one, cans better retain the freshness and quality of a beer. Unlike bottles, they cut out UV light that degrade hops and change the taste and nature of the product.
USA based EPS will also exhibit at InPrint 2016 for the first time. This company evolved into industrial ink-jet largely through its experience in pad-printing which is still being developed and integrated. EPS has grown with the support of Italian company Comec, based near Milan; until 2006, analogue printing was the main focus. However, the demand for digital solutions for product decoration began to shift the following year and, at that point, EPS developed its first single-pass ink-jet machine.
Sakurai is one of the world’s foremost manufacturers of industrial screen-printing equipment and, at InPrint 2016, the company will be providing insight and innovations for this sector. A leader in automated screen process for manufacturing, it will be demonstrating the power, flexibility and variety of industrial applications achievable with its technology and showing its MS80SD + CCD (camera registration system).
Screen-printing specialist ESC supplies machines for producing industrial items. Utilising a huge technical centre which is designed for testing, this offers customers the possibility of practical print tests. In this way, the suitability of the different print processes can be checked right from the very beginning of a product’s design. As well as its print technology, ESC has more than 65 years of experience in industrial printing concentrated on innovative, individually designed print solutions.
Nazdar manufactures the most comprehensive selection of UV, UV-LED, water-based and solvent-based digital ink-jet, screen-printing, and narrow web inks and coatings, all obtainable from a single source. These inks are used within automotive, direct-to-shape packaging, smart technology and many other applications.
Milan based Sirpi will exhibit again at InPrint and has been a manufacturer of ink and varnish for more than 50 years. The company supplies many industries such as furniture, automotive, packaging, label and general graphics. It has a wide range of inks ready to use, often designing and manufacturing inks specific to customer requirements. Sirpi has expert knowledge and manufactures water-based, solvent-based, UV-curable and UV-LED products.
A new exhibitor is French based Ceradrop which is a division of MGI Group. This company designs and markets materials deposition digital printers exclusively for the printed electronics industry and for smart 3D printing. Utilising a modular-based scalable concept, CeraPrinter series models present new opportunities for feasibility studies and the launch of new products into the printed electronics market.
Alchemie Technology will show its Jetronica technology, which is an industrial head insofar as it has been designed for industrial use. The company says that most heads are fundamentally designed for graphic printing so the emphasis is on precise image reproduction. Jetronica comes at it from an entirely different angle and is designed for digital deposition of a variety of functional fluids.
While there is a significant amount of interest in direct-to-shape ink-jet technology for packaging, the development work undertaken by Mankiewicz with CyconJet is opening up new possibilities for different manufacturing lines. With a background in paint manufacturing, Mankiewicz developed CyconJet which is a UV ink-jet system specifically developed for applications in the industrial sector. The company believes it is a different proposition to print onto paper and foils than it is directly onto curved shapes and metal based products.
A new exhibitor for 2016 is ink-jet leader and InPrint Knowledge Partner, EFI. With its headquarters in Silicon Valley, California, the company is a major supplier of a constantly developing range of high-end production ink-jet printers and inks, print MIS/ERP workflow technologies and globally recognised EFI Fiery digital print workflow technology systems.
Specialised operations within EFI include EFI Cretaprint in Spain, producing ink-jet printers claimed to be the most advanced digital ceramic tile decorating systems, and Italian-based EFI Reggiani, manufacturer of printing machines and pre-post treatment equipment principally for the textile sector. Expansion continues as earlier this year EFI acquired Rialco Ltd in the UK, one of Europe's leading suppliers of dye powders and colour products for digital print and industrial manufacturing industries.
Thieme is an international leader in high quality screen-printing and digital printing systems, from classic graphic printing to specialised functional coatings and the integration of printing processes in complex manufacturing procedures. The Thieme-Digital printing system is a variable machine concept which can also be tailored to individual customer requirements whether screen-printing or digital printing.
Entrance to the show is FREE if you pre-register your participation in advance via this link.
This means you will not have to pay the entry fee of € 30 on arrival at the venue and it will speeds up the access to the exhibition.
For any questions about visiting the show, contact a member of our Team who will be happy to assist you.
See you in Milan!
The InPrint Italy 2016 Team
Tel: +44 (0)1727 814 400
“InPrint has been an exciting show, we meet new people that we have never met before – many people who are looking for innovation, different faces, a lot of new ideas and a lot of good discussions.”
Ronen Zioni, HP
“...an amazing show for us... it has opened our eyes to opportunities and where to focus our business in the future and we look forward to participating in another InPrint next year.”
Dr John Mills, Inca Digital Printers