Asahi Photoproducts will present at EskoWorld 2022 a sustainable automation in platemaking with CrystalCleanConnect


Asahi Photoproducts will be attending EskoWorld 2022, scheduled for 7-9 June at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Dallas, Texas. Experts from the company will be available to discuss all of Asahi’s flexographic platemaking solutions that enable printers/converters to produce flexographic plates in harmony with the environment. Specific focus will be placed on CrystalCleanConnect, a first-in-the-world breakthrough solution that reduces flexographic platemaking from 12 steps to one and uses no VOC-based washout solvents, delivering high-quality press-ready plates in 1 hour and 10 minutes, reducing operator handling time by 90%. Created through a partnership between Esko, Kongsberg and Asahi Photoproducts, it represents a migration to Industry 4.0 and positions flexography even more favorably against offset and gravure. With three units already installed in the field, CrystalCleanConnect also represents the first time plate cutting has been completely integrated into the platemaking process.

About CrystalCleanConnect
The name CrystalCleanConnect is derived from Esko´s Crystal product range, Asahi´s CleanPrint product range, and the Connection to subsequent devices such as the Kongsberg cutting table in the print production workflow. The joint development is a sustainable process, an industry first, with no VOC-based washout solvents due to the use of Asahi’s AWP™ CleanPrint water-washable plates, with never-before-seen levels of automation, generating a cut plate that is ready for mounting. CleanPrint ensures a significant print efficiency improvement, up to 40% in many cases. And ink usage can be reduced by as much as 20% due to Crystal Screening technologies. Key to the CleanPrint technology is the fact that plates are designed to easily release ink, resulting in few, if any, press stops for plate cleaning, keeping a consistent print quality from beginning to end of the run. The close nesting of digital files enables precise plate cutting by the Kongsberg table and results in an additional 10% plate waste reduction.

CrystalCleanConnect is comprised of several highly integrated components to deliver a complete system:

  • System includes intelligent plate handling robots, Esko’s CDI Crystal XPS, Asahi’s AWP CCC plate processor and an inline Kongsberg cutting table.
  • Integrated imager and exposure unit delivers full control over plate floor and printing dots with simultaneous main and back UV LED exposure
  • Operator simply loads AWP CleanPrint water-wash plate material on CDI Crystal to start the process and retrieves plates from exit table that are ready to mount on press with just one single operator touch point
  • Asahi AWP™ water-washable plates deliver an environmentally sound platemaking process AND result in up to 40% higher press efficiency!

The system is tied together with a central communications hub that integrates the process from end to end.

During the conference, Dieter Niederstadt, Asahi’s Technical Marketing Manager, will present a session on 8 June at 3:30: “Automation in Platemaking with CrystalCleanConnect”. He will explain how the AWP™ plate technology and the automated system work, why it is a world’s first revolutionary solution for flexo platemaking, and share real-world customer experiences with this 1-step flexo platemaking solution. Niederstadt and other experts from Asahi will be present at the show to meet with journalists and attendees who are interested in learning more about this innovative solution, as well as other flexographic products and solutions from Asahi.