Earlier this year Uteco announced that it would start developing a version of its Sapphire Evo press to incorporate Kodak’s Ultrastream continuous inkjet technology, and now the company appears to have sold the first of these.
The customer, who has chosen to remain anonymous, is a US-based company working in the graphic arts and is not one of the existing Sapphire Evo customers. Uteco is still planning to launch the press at Drupa 2020 and this first press itself, which will act as a beta test unit, is not due to be installed until late 2020.
Significantly, this press, the Evo W, now has a print width of 1.25 meters where the original Evo, which uses Kodak’s older Stream inkjet, had a 650mm web width. This allows it to challenge for more packaging work against traditional flexographic printers. The press uses Kodak’s aqueous inks and fluids and should be suitable for use with food, beverage, and personal care products for both paper and flexible films.
Kodak says the press will be cost-effective against flexo presses for short to medium runs. It should be able to run at speeds up to 150mpm, with resolution up to 600 x 1800 dpi.
Aldo Peretti, President and CEO of the Uteco Group, commented: “Converters and brands expect quality solutions that are sustainable and uphold brand integrity. We are proud to work with Kodak to deliver new technologies that meet such demands and enable growth.” You can find further details on the Ultrastream technology here and on the Uteco Sapphire Evo here.