31 May 2023

Fogra testing proves green benefits of EFI's VUTEk LED printers

Energy assessments carried out by Fogra have confirmed that EFI's VUTEk® wide-format printers with LED curing show energy reductions of up to 82% when compared with devices that use conventional mercury arc lamps. Even in print-ready mode, the company's LX printers with "cool curing" LEDs are now shown to save up to 77% in electricity usage, simply because the LEDs are off, unlike mercury arc lamps which still consume power when the machine is idle between jobs. The calculations of Fogra's Energy Efficiency Project ("Energy efficiency of large and small format printing systems") have demonstrated that users can save around €16,000 every year on power consumption, an important factor for businesses pricing up jobs on both rigid and flexible materials.

Fogra's comparisons with digital printers using conventional curing lamps showed that the former used 1.18kW/m2 while EFI's VUTEk GS3250LX Pro used only 0.22 kW/m2. This impressive scoring adds to the functional flexibility incorporated into EFI's LED-curing printers, with their ability to work with thinner and more sensitive materials, as well as lower cost media.

"EFI has pioneered the use of LEDs in its growing series of production-class wide-format printers with 'cool curing', and Fogra's analysis provides conclusive evidence of the additional savings and green benefits that can be attained by businesses investing in our technology," states Scott Schinlever, senior vice president and general manager of EFI Inkjet Solutions. "Although we thoroughly tested and assessed the lower energy usage when we originally developed these printers, the results from Fogra now provide third-party and impartial confirmation of the significantly reduced power requirements.  While others claim green benefits, their use of heat to cure and having thicker substrates runs counter to being green."

The evaluations carried out employed Fogra's "Image Quality Test Suite" for printing, with typical production and stand-by/print ready modes being used. The conditions were configured to emulate both highest productivity and greatest quality, incorporating the relevant machine combinations for accurate results.

"I would like to thank EFI for the great support during our research project. We found out that the used print mode heavily contributes to the final energy efficiency (m2/kWh). However when using agreed upon parameters, as in our developed guideline, the significant savings of LED based curing can be demonstrated," says Andreas Kraushaar, head of Fogra's Prepress Technology Department. " 

The objective of Fogra Forschungsgesellschaft Druck e.V. (Fogra Graphic Technology Research Association) is to promote print engineering and its future-oriented technologies in the fields of research and development, and to enable the printing industry to utilise the results of this activity. To this end the association maintains its own institute, with about 60 staff members including engineers, chemists and physicists.

SEPIAX announces imminent launch of environmentally-friendly AQ160 printer

SEPIAX Ink Technology GmbH has announced the imminent launch of the AQ160 printer, specifically designed to run the latest generation of SEPIAX Aquares inks, at the EcoPrint Show later this week.  The company has also strengthened the distribution partnership with Reprographic Technology International.

The EcoPrint show in Berlin on 26th and 27th September will see the introduction of a purpose-built roll-to-roll printer, the AQ160, designed to exploit the capabilities of the Sepiax Aquares range of ink.

Following the success of the HP latex printers, the industry is seeing a shift to "green" solutions and a greater awareness of the impact on the environment of harmful solvents, non-recyclable materials and excessive power consumption. Major manufacturers are starting to consider the introduction of  their versions of  water-based, multipurpose, ink. For example, Mimaki launched the LX400 at  Fespa in February of this year.

It was only a matter of time before SEPIAX Ink Technology GmbH, with some 5 years experience in, and a market-leading grasp of, the water-based resin surface-bonding ink technology, brought out a purpose built printer to use the ink for general sign-making and graphical applications.

In the UK a partnership is planned with Reprographic Technology International, a Canadian-based company with global reach supplying parts and consumables to the whole professional digital print sector, encompassing sheet and web fed production print, wide format plan print, labelling and display graphics. This partnership will provide the support needed to develop dealerships in the UK and Europe, with spare parts being held in the UK. This is a natural progression for the company's emergent Print Solutions Division.

Peter Barton, EMEA business director for RTI says, "I have been involved in the fascinating new technology of the Sepiax ink now for a couple of years, and I am excited by this new development in hardware. After various successful modifications to existing solvent printers being used in a range of semi-industrial processes, from the production of skis, flooring, room dividers, credit cards and even coffee mugs, the focus is turned to the signmaker and graphic arts printer, who wants to produce a wide range of media on a dedicated machine. This is where the AQ160 comes in. Built in Germany, the AQ160 is a 1.6metre roll-to-roll printer with specialized heating systems to ensure perfect curing of the SEPIAX Aquares ink. These precisely-controlled heating systems include pre-heat, under-platen heat, post-heat and even an infrared heating device on the carriage. There is also the option of a scanning "super" dryer to assist with speedy drying of highly hydrophobic materials. In spite of the demanding heating requirements the standard machine will consume not much more power than a standard solvent printer. Even the optional superdryer is using infrared scanning technology to minimize power consumption. The use of permanent piezo printheads also reduces costs and the consumption of raw materials."

Karl Ebner, sales and marketing director of SEPIAX says, "The EcoPrint show is the perfect platform for our company since we have been one of the first ones in this business defining 'ecology & green chemistry' as our company's principles. The latest market developments prove that moving away from harmful solvents and reducing power consumption are major steps for the graphics industry. Together with the theme of this show it confirms the direction SEPIAX had already chosen years ago."

Erik Norman, VP of Sales and Marketing for RTI says, "Although we are traditionally seen as a supplier of spare parts and consumables to the digital print sector, the rapid changes in this marketplace are leading to our clients asking us for advice on new print technologies. and this has naturally led to the creation of our Print Solutions Division. We have elected to work with leading print technology companies like SEPIAX who are the driving force behind this resin technology for inks, and you will be seeing other announcements from us regarding more leading-edge technology products, like solutions utilizing Memjet engines. We see these type of products changing the way our clients look at their print methodology."

All will be revealed at the EcoPrint show - the world's first event focused on sustainable print business.

“A lot of feedback for our latest ink improvement came from the industrial segment” adds Franz Aigner, CEO at SEPIAX with responsibility for the company’s product development. “In addition SEPIAX can be seen as the inventor of water-based resin inks for piezo printheads. We now have more than 5 years of experience with this new ink technology. Of course, our leading position helps to develop this technology to the next level while others are only now starting to launch their 1st generation products.”

Sustainability is in the air for Fujifilm

Fujifilm Europe has installed five wind turbines at its manufacturing and R&D site in Tilburg, The Netherlands.  The five Vestas V90 wind turbines, each able to generate a maximum of two megawatts, are capable of generating approximately 20% of the total energy used by the 63 hectare Tilburg site.  This development is part of an ambitious target set by FUJIFILM Manufacturing Europe B.V. to become a carbon neutral site, with the wind turbines alone likely to reduce CO2 emissions by 12,000 tonnes per year.

The company has also installed a water recycling facility, consisting of two large water purification units, on site. With these and other sustainability measures in place, FUJIFILM Manufacturing Europe B.V. estimates that it currently reuses 13% of the waste it produces, recycles 68%, regenerates 18% and so is left with less than 1% of the total site waste to dispose of.

To supplement these initiatives, however, Fujifilm is also investigating the possibility of cleaning some of the waste water the site generates for reuse within the production process, as well as the option of constructing a complete waste water treatment system on site, in collaboration with three neighbouring companies. In addition, a feasibility study is also in progress for replacing the natural gas used in production with bio-gas, with the results of this study due to be available at the end of 2011.

Ryuta Masui, senior vice president, FUJIFILM Europe GmbH, comments, “Fujifilm has always been committed to the environment as we feel that we have a responsibility to reduce our burden on the planet as much as possible.  With the last of our five windmills now in production, we are proud to be able to generate 20% of the energy we consume at our Tilburg manufacturing site through wind power.”

He continues, “It’s not only the way in which we manufacture our products that is important but also the products themselves. We aim to manufacture both processless and low-chemistry offset plates at this site, and are also in the process of developing other exciting products for sustainable applications in other areas of our business here at Tilburg.”

The company is also pleased to confirm that its highly anticipated third state-of-the-art offset plate manufacturing line (PS-10) is close to completion, as originally announced. The new PS-10 line has been designed to be able to manufacture Fujifilm’s ‘lo-chem’ family of plates, alongside Fujifilm’s most advanced printing plate to date, the recently launched Brillia HD PRO-T3. Once complete, these investments will not only make Fujifilm’s plate production facilities in Tilburg one of the largest in the world, but also the most sustainable.

Epson Issues 2011 Sustainability Report

Epson today announced that it has posted on its website its 2011 Sustainability Report, a publication that summarizes the Epson Group's global CSR (corporate social responsibility) programs during the fiscal year ended March 31, 2011.

Epson's mission is to realize its Management Philosophy of becoming "a company trusted throughout the world" by conducting its business in a socially responsible manner. Epson aims to be an open, progressive company, one that proactively uses a variety of communication tools to provide stakeholders with information on its business and philanthropic activities. One such communication tool is the annual Sustainability Report. The primary aim of the Sustainability Report is to explain how Epson is fulfilling its corporate social responsibility and building trust.

The editorial features and content of "Sustainability Report 2011" are summarized below.

Sustainability Report 2011 editorial features

1. The report is structured in sections corresponding to phrases in Epson's Management Philosophy.

2. This year's report was for an audience consisting primarily of Epson customers, and care was taken to select content from a customer perspective.

3. Feature articles present examples of actions being taken in line with the initiatives below that are designed to achieve the goals of the SE15 Long-Range Corporate Vision established in 2009.
Environmental accountingInitiative to crystallize Epson's technological and collective strength: Commercialization of the SurePress L-4033A digital inkjet label press for industry
Initiative to embody customer value in emerging markets: The launch in the Indonesian market of the L100 and L200 printers equipped with high-capacity ink tank systems

4. The report covers our global social and environmental programs.


Commitment to customer satisfaction. The commercialization of the EB-1775W mobile projector and actions taken to enhance sensory quality are presented as examples of actions that have created customer value.
Commitment to environmental conservation. Actions taken in the area of products, services, and manufacturing are reported in line with the SE15 Mid-Term Environmental Policy, which sets forth milestones on the road to achieving the goals of "Environmental Vision 2050."
Individuality and teamwork. This section covers topics such as a new personnel system that is to be introduced in 2012 for members of management and Epson's approach to human resource development.
Trusted throughout the world. Initiatives for the third year since the implementation of J-SOX and initiatives to strengthen the trade control system are among the topics covered.
Prospering with the community. The section presents examples of strategic changes in community engagement and efforts to aid survivors of the earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan.

The Japanese and English versions of the Sustainability Report will be posted simultaneously on Epson's website. A Chinese version will be made available at the end of August.

Caldera launches the first eco-print calculator: Costview 3.0

Caldera will launch the first carbon footprint calculator dedicated to the wide format printing industry. The fully redesigned and upgraded version of its cost visualisation software for wide format printers, CostView 3.0 has been improved with new features, a brand new design and an industry premier module for carbon footprint monitoring.
Calculate your printing's carbon footprint

Positioned as a dashboard for a manager sensitive to production costs, CostView now has an eco-sensitive dimension. Its newest and most important feature is the addition of a carbon footprint analysis tool. Users can now indicate the CO2 rejected by each of the elements of the job: ink, media, electricity, additional costs.
According to Joseph Mergui, Caldera CEO "By introducing eco-responsible data into out RIP solutions, Caldera ambitions to keep its leadership in innovating the wide format printing industry"
CostView 3.0 : cost visualisation to improve business profitability

The new 3.0 version is above all a tool intended for printers to monitor all costs pertaining to printing. It is a fully integrated production management tool which extracts information about jobs directly from the RIP spooler, thus enabling a production manager to control, modify, study and export all costs pertaining to a job.
With CostView 3.0, any production manager can view all jobs in the spooler, monitor ink and media costs add optional or automatic costs to each job and export the job listing with all relevant costs as a spreadsheet ready for further analysis. Its web driven interface can be accessed by any user in your company network using a simple web browser.
"As Green Printing is becoming increasingly important, it was evident for us to start to imagine new tools that would not only calculate a carbon impact (CO2 footprint) on the environment but enable Eco-Sensitive Printers to show with data their implication on printing with concern of the environment." says Sebastien Hanssens (VP Marketing of Caldera).
Discover the new product at ISA Las Vegas and FESPA Hambourg.


Oce NV Wins Green IT Awards

Océ withstood the fierce challenge of international competition and recently landed a 'Green IT' award, reflecting the company's efforts to help customers drive their business by adopting world-leading sustainability measures.

Described as a company "deserving recognition", Océ's international expertise in making a significant contribution to improving the IT industry's environmental performance has been singled out in the UK government-backed Green IT Awards 2010. Océ, an international leader in digital document management and delivery, scooped the "Editor's Choice" accolade at a black-tie event before 200 guests and VIPs at the Prince Albert Suite, London Zoo. Voters among the publication's 70,000 readership had also nominated Océ for the Green IT Magazine Product of the Year (the Océ PlotWave printing system) and the Recycling Scheme of the Year (Caring by Nature).

A company that builds in sustainability and delivers solutions for customers

Brian Wall, Editor of Green IT magazine, commended Océ for its sustainability ethos, which he pointed out had been a corporate cornerstone long before the environment became fashionable. At the awards ceremony, he said: "Océ is a company that builds in sustainability, and its staff apply that to how they deliver solutions to their customers. Océ deserves recognition and, in this case, the accolade of 'Editor's Choice'."

Computer and software companies, including giants like Microsoft and Dell, as well as other digital print manufacturers, were among those who also made it through to the finals. But Océ was the only winner in the "Editor's Choice" category. Green IT awards acknowledge the "outstanding environmental products, suppliers and projects of 2009", as well as highlight companies and teams that have made a "significant contribution to improving the IT industry's environmental performance".

Océ's Caring by Nature Program involves a series of initiatives that underlines its commitment to sustainability. Océ is focused on creating value for all stakeholders by realizing profitable, sustainable growth. Its strategy is aimed at optimizing business processes, strengthening its product portfolio and boosting distribution power. Océ's green ethos involves providing innovative print and document management products and services for professional environments, while acting as a responsible corporate citizen.

Sustainability initiatives developed across the world


Examples of Océ's own sustainability work include:

• Launching Océ Green Services to support eco-friendly management services

• Ten companies achieving ISO 140001 accreditation

• Reducing the CO2 footprint of its products. Cutting emissions of ozone, dust, toner and noise are integral to Océ product development

• Scaling down electricity consumption at Océ UK headquarters by 23 percent in a year

• Reducing paper consumption by 650 tons at an R&D department in Germany

• Setting up "green awards". For instance, Océ North America Wide Format Printing Systems division hosted the "Green Reprographer of the Year" Award

• Organizing the Océ Sustainability Week, a campaign providing employees with information about how they can make a positive impact on the environment

• Being featured by the Carbon Disclosure Project as part of its approach to climate change disclosure


"It's a recognized fact that a strong performance in sustainability contributes to operational efficiency as well as generating stronger product propositions and a more powerful market image. It is no coincidence that Océ embraced sustainability as part of its core proposition decades ago. Indeed, it is in the DNA of our company that has a long and proud history stretching back more than 130 years. Integrating sustainability into our offering has become one of our key priorities. We recognize our corporate duty to actively help manage our customers' environment," said Bron Curley, managing director of Océ UK Ltd.

The key sponsor of the Green IT Awards was the Department of Energy and Climate Change, responsible for UK energy policy and for tackling global climate change on behalf of the UK.