Kodak launches new Sonora X Plates

Kodak is launching a new Sonora X Process Free Plate, which the company says builds on all the advantages of process free technology and has a longer run length, faster imaging, and more robust handling capabilities than other process free plates.

Kodak claims the new plates have been built with significant advances that remove the previous barriers to process free for printers with demanding performance requirements and can be used for nearly any application that is typically printed with an unbaked processed plate. The company says it estimates that up to 80 per cent of the offset print market will now be able to go process free, including large commercial sheetfed printers, heatset and coldset web printers, offset packaging printers, and printers using UV and low-energy UV. In addition, Kodak says the new Sonora X-N Process Free Plate extends the technology to medium and large newspaper printers.

Kodak says with both economic growth and environmental sustainability being priorities when it comes to printers’ strategic investments, it is forecasting the trend to process free plates to continue and anticipates that 30 per cent of the company’s plate volume will be process free by next year.

[Related: Fairfax switches to Kodak Sonora news plates]

Brad Kruchten, president of the Print Systems Division at Kodak says, “Kodak’s goal is to make printing more sustainable and to make it profitable for all printers by eliminating processing and chemicals from platemaking. Sonora X delivers a breakthrough for process free technology. The dramatic improvements to run length and handling enable the market fit for process free to expand to up to 80 per cent of the market, thus making Sonora X truly mainstream.”

Ralf Lokay, owner of Druckerei Lokay, a previous user of Sonora XP Plates and one of the first printers to test and convert to Sonora X Plates, says, “Sustainability is a business advantage for our company, from how we heat our facility to how we print for our customers. In fact, over 75 per cent of our customers print with Lokay because of our strong commitment to sustainability, and Sonora Plates play an important role here. Since converting to process free plates, we have reduced water consumption by more than 30 per cent and have eliminated all chemicals. We do all of this while producing the highest quality output for our customers.”

The company says the new plates can print two to six times longer than the previous KODAK Sonora XP Plates, depending on application, and improved exposure sensitivity ensures that printers can maximize platemaking throughput on even the fastest platesetters on the market. Kodak says the Sonora x has proprietary enhanced anodizing and coating technology, increasing the robustness of the plate, so it can withstand highly automated or fast-paced operating environments, where plate durability is crucial.

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