The general trend toward customization is a hallmark of the digital age. The option of custom-enhancing high-quality mass-produced items and thus reaching consumers or customers on a personal level opens up attractive new and profitable business models for manufacturers of branded goods and industrial production companies.
As a result, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) is expecting a high level of interest in the possibilities for custom-finishing and printing on objects at InPrint 2018, which is taking place from November 20 to 22 in Milan.
The company is therefore showcasing Omnifire technology and the Omnifire 250 and 1000 models, which can be used to print customized three-dimensional objects of any shape made from a wide variety of materials. Both models can be integrated into industrial production processes and online marketing campaigns. For example, the pilot user and automotive supplier Ritzi Lackiertechnik GmbH has integrated the inkjet system into its industrial production process. It has thus been able to increase its productivity and quality compared to the previously used method.
The Omnifire 1000 in particular has undergone considerable further development since it was unveiled at the same venue exactly two years ago. It now enables full-area, seamless printing of even complex shapes, without any visible transitions or joins between the tracks, the width of which is determined by the print heads. This is made possible thanks to a special process that joins these tracks together by seamlessly printing several in series, each with a width of 7 centimeters (2.76 inches).
“The ability to print on an object’s entire surface opens up a whole new range of striking effects at the point of sale for manufacturers of branded goods, and means the design possibilities are now virtually unlimited,” says a delighted Montserrat Peidro-Insa, Head of the Digital business unit at Heidelberg.
Heidelberg is exhibiting Omnifire technology at InPrint 2018 for the first time on a joint stand with its partner Plasmatreat, based in Steinhagen in Germany’s Westphalia region. Plasmatreat is a world-leading specialist in pre-treating material surfaces with atmospheric-pressure plasma.
Using patented plasma nozzle technology, materials undergo ultrafine cleaning, are simultaneously activated, or are functionally nanocoated. In the Omnifire systems, Heidelberg uses a rotary nozzle developed by Plasmatreat for pre-treating objects, thus enhancing crosslinking of the ink with the print object material.