Nela Plate Handling for ‘AJC’ Plant Upgrade

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By: E&P Staff

Nela, Oakdale, Minn., will supply a plate-handling, verification and distribution system for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s computer-to-plate installation, as well as tool-less lock-ups for the paper’s four TKS presses.

Both are part of a press-enhancement project that resulted from the paper’s production consolidation. Completion is expected by year’s end.

Nela’s prepress work is part of a fully automated plate-production facility, slated to run in regular production in October at the AJC’s Gwinnett County printing plant. Three plate lines will be equipped with Kodak platesetters, Nela Evolution vision punch-benders, blandk plate feeder and plate buffer.

After bending, plates will be transported to a 48-station over/under sorting system with 900-plate-per-hour throughput. The interface allows operators to program and select sorting criteria and to identify sorted-plate locations for pressroom personnel.

Nela plate-tracking software checks that each plate arrives at the sorter and reports arrivals to the workflow system. The Nela Status Center detectsall plate-room device activity, which it communicates to and dislays on a central monitor.

Tool-less lock-ups will be supplied for existing presses and new color towers — 176 printing couples in all. Nela said locks wil be pinned for the current 48-inch web width but (along with the benders) provided with simple change-over for 46 or 44 inches.

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