Kodak has this week launched a newspaper version of the Sonora thermal, process-free commercial printing plate that it unveiled at last year's Drupa.
Simultaneously launched at the World Publishing Expo 2013 in Berlin, Germany (7-9 October) and the Distripress Congress in Toronto, Canada (7-10 October), the Sonora News is aimed at small to medium-sized newspaper printers.
It is Kodak's first process-free newspaper plate to be made available outside North America, where printers in the US and Canada could already purchase the PF-N Non Process Plate.
The two plates (the PF-N and the Sonora News) have matching resolution (3-97% at 150lpi) and FM capability (36 micron stochastic) although the Sonora News has half the energy requirement (150mJ/cm2 compared with 325mJ/cm2).
The Sonora News is also capable of twice the PF-N's 100,000 impression rated run length in coldset web offset applications. In direct litho applications the Sonora News is rated to 50,000 to 75,000 impressions, falling to 10,000 impressions for UV ink applications.
Kodak recommends the Sonora News plate for use with its Trendsetter News and Generation News platesetters, which can image plates up to a maximum size of 838mm x 1,118mm and 660mm x 1,030mm respectively.
Kodak cited an output speed of up to 240 plates per hour on the Generation News platesetter.
Rich Rindo, general manager of Kodak’s Worldwide Graphics Marketing, said that the Sonora News plate would enhance productivity for newspaper printers, while enabling them to reduce costs and environmental impact by cutting out the need for processing chemistry.
"Newspaper publishers, regardless of size, can now take advantage of this breakthrough and remove the plate processing step entirely, which ultimately helps newspapers improve their bottom line," he added.