Kodak’s SONORA NEWS Process-Free Plates Offer Green Efficiency

By: Ed Zintel

Kodak’s SONORA NEWS Process-Free Plates Offer Green Efficiency

As the newspaper industry becomes increasingly aware of the rationale for going green, printers should be looking for more ways to cut down on waste and eliminate toxic products from the print process.

In the pre-press arena, Kodak SONORA NEWS Process Free Plates are process-free thermal plates that eliminate the need for chemistry and processing equipment from plate making, reducing environmental impact and costs. By removing chemicals, water, equipment, energy, and waste from the clean-out step, printing becomes much less time consuming. Yet, they deliver the print capabilities and productivity of mainstream plates.

The Kodak SONORA NEWS plate has impressive quality (3-97 percent dot range resolution at 150 lines per inch, depending on the capability of the imaging device), a strong print performance, including 200,000 impressions run length capability for web presses, and a full range of gauges including 0.40 mm thickness and very large format (VLF) size capability. Running on the Kodak GENERATION NEWS platesetter, SONORA NEWS plates are able to be imaged at speeds up to 240 plates per hour.
Said Rich Rindo, vice president of worldwide graphics marketing for Kodak, “There are two major parts to what the SONORA plates bring: the environmental improvements both in and out of the pressroom, and the improvements to pre-press operation, both of which help the sustainability of print.

“With our sales projection of SONORA (NEWS, and XP plates for commercial printing), we project we’ll save 36 million gallons of water per year worldwide, plus 530,000 gallons of plate chemistry, and 102 million kilowatt hours of energy.”

In computer-to-plate technology today, it’s a digital process and with SONORA the analog processing step is eliminated so it speeds time to pressroom, creating longer deadlines, Rindo said.

Rindo said a newspaper in Brazil using SONORA NEWS plates has been able to push its press deadlines back 45 minutes, which has allowed the paper to adjust its distribution times, critical because highway traffic patterns can result in distribution times ranging from 45 minutes to 3 hours, depending on time of day.

SONORA plates are currently produced in Osterode, Germany and Leeds, England; however Rindo said Kodak is scaling up to production and distribution centers. Kodak announced in late April that it would add a new plate manufacturing line in Columbus later this year.

For more information on the Kodak SONORA process-free plates, visit graphics.kodak.com/US/en/Product/Digital_Offset_Plates/default.htm.

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