Continuous-feed Inkjet: The Web Paper Challenge
For transactional printing, the vast majority of the paper is uncoated, often MICR/OCR, or MOCR, bond, and the InfoPrint5000 can produce duplex monochrome and full color with on-demand or spot MICR. For coated papers, the InfoPrint 5000 offers an Extended Media Dryer Option, which allows printers to use a wider variety of coated stocks.
Xerox Corp. takes a different approach with its CiPress 325 and CiPress 500 Production Inkjet Systems. The CiPress (pronounced like cypress, the tree) uses waterless inkjet and works with virtually all uncoated papers. Kevin Horey, vice president of production product marketing, explains: "The press uses dye-based polymeric resin in a solid ink. The ink is melted, and jetted directly onto the paper where it dries instantly. This allows crisp dots and sharp edges and, since it sits on top of the paper, permits the use of lighter basis weights." Horey adds that "printers don't have to change their paper supply chain for the CiPress Production Inkjet System because papers used on offset systems work on CiPress."
RR Donnelley's Strategy
One printer, RR Donnelley, has taken the matter into its own hands. Dating back to 1998, when Moore Wallace, later acquired by RR Donnelley, found that customers needed better inkjet quality, they went to HP and licensed inkjet heads. RR Donnelley has been an integrator ever since, and today RR Donnelley has its own ProteusJet Inkjet Press platform. Mary Lee Schneider, president of digital solutions and chief technology officer, explains that they have ProteusJet inkjet presses with both thermal (HP) heads and piezo (Kyocera) heads. She adds, "It's important that Donnelley offer customers a variety of inkjet technologies based on their application. Whether thermal or piezo, all use pigment-based inks for superior color intensity and permanence."
RR Donnelley has tested more than 300 sheets, and has printed on coated and uncoated stocks ranging from 17# to 9-pt. Schneider notes that, "generally, what works on Prosper and HP T400 works on ProteusJet." The ProteusJet platform also uses on-press coatings that enable traditional offset papers.
Jack Miller is founder and Principal Consultant at Market-Intell LLC, offering Need to Know™ market intelligence in paper, print and packaging. Previously, he was senior consultant, North America, with Pira International.
Known as the Paper Guru, Jack is the former director of Market Intelligence with Domtar, where he also held positions as regional sales manager, territory sales manager and product manager. He has presented at On Demand, RISI’s Global Outlook, PRIMIR, SustainCom World and at various IntertechPira conferences. Jack has written for Printing Impressions, Canadian Printer, Paper 360, PaperTree Letter and Package Printing, along with publishing a monthly e-newsletter, MarketIntellibits.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from The College of the Holy Cross and has done graduate studies in Statistics and Finance.