Nabe Process validates Asahi Photoproducts CrystalCleanConnect benefits; Nabe's flexo division manager says water-wash plates improve print quality, productivity, save costs, reduce substrate waste and make-ready downtime, do not release odors

Sample article from our Printing & Publishing

TOKYO & BRUSSELS , August 16, 2022 (press release) –

Automated flexographic platemaking system helps company transition to a more sustainable solution

Nabe Process Corporation, the first company worldwide to install CrystalCleanConnect, was established in 1964 in Takamatsu Prefecture, Japan.

When it first entered the flexo market, Nabe Process was using solvent-based photopolymer plates and processors. In 2020, however, the company began looking for a more sustainable solution that could take the company to new levels of quality, cost and cycle time, and create a better ambient work environment for its employees.

Transitioning to a More Sustainable Solution

“When we learned about AWP™ CleanPrint water-washable plates from Asahi Photoproducts, we were intrigued,” said Mr. Yasuo Naka, Flexo Division Manager, Nabe Process Co., Ltd. “With water wash versus a solvent washout, platemaking time is significantly reduced, helping us to increase throughput in our plant.”

He also found that AWP™ CleanPrint water-washable plates offered other value, adding, “These plates demonstrated a significant improvement in print quality and productivity compared to the conventional solvent-processed flexographic plates. This includes cost savings and faster cycle time due to make-ready time reduction, fewer press stops for plate cleaning, and reduced substrate waste. The AWP™ plates feature high dimensional plate accuracy and stable print repeatability. Plus, since no VOC-based washout solvents are used, there is no odor; and the platemaking and press rooms are comfortable with a perfect ambient environment for the staff.”

He added, "We expect our customers to be even more satisfied with the quality we deliver and with our turnaround times. We will be using CrystalCleanConnect and AWP™ plates for more products in the future".

CrystalCleanConnect: The Details

CrystalCleanConnect is the first automated platemaking line from plate imaging to a ready-to-mount plate, replacing a VOC-based solvent processing solution using water wash technology in balance with the environment.

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

  1. Esko´s automated software hub, that integrates the process from end to end.
  2. Esko´s plate handling robot. The operator simply places the plate material on the loading table. The plate handling robot loads AWP™ CleanPrint water-wash plate material on the CDI Crystal XPS and retrieves press-ready plates at the end of the process.
  3. Esko’s CDI Crystal XPS. The integrated imager and exposure unit delivers full control over plate floor and printing dots with simultaneous main and back UV LED exposure for an extremely consistent and high-quality plate image.
  4. Asahi’s CCC inline plate processor, dryer and light finisher. Asahi AWP™-DEW water-washable plates do not need plate drying when processed via an inline air-knife, removing the water from the plate surface. The result is a significant reduction in plate production time, since the drying process, especially with solvent-based platemaking, can take as much as two hours.
  5. Kongsberg inline cutting table, a unique integration for the industry. Using efficient file nesting results in at least a 10% savings in waste plate material.

CrystalCleanConnect is the first automated platemaking solution to improve the ambient operator work environment by eliminating VOC based washout solutions from the plate making process and to improve operator safety by eliminating hazardous operator touch points from 12 to 1. It is also an industry-first with integration of plate cutting into the automated workflow. The first plate is available, including cutting, 70 minutes after the start.

For more information about CrystalCleanConnect, download our free white paper here.

* All content is copyrighted by Industry Intelligence, or the original respective author or source. You may not recirculate, redistrubte or publish the analysis and presentation included in the service without Industry Intelligence's prior written consent. Please review our terms of use.

See our dashboard in action - schedule an demo
Jason Irving
Jason Irving
- SVP Enterprise Solutions -

We offer built-to-order printing & publishing coverage for our clients. Contact us for a free consultation.

About Us

We deliver market news & information relevant to your business.

We monitor all your market drivers.

We aggregate, curate, filter and map your specific needs.

We deliver the right information to the right person at the right time.

Our Contacts

1990 S Bundy Dr. Suite #380,
Los Angeles, CA 90025

+1 (310) 553 0008

About Cookies On This Site

This website stores cookies on your computer. These cookies are used to improve your website experience and provide more personalized services to you, both on this website and through other media. To find out more about the cookies we use, see our Privacy Policy. We won't track your information when you visit our site. But in order to comply with your preferences, we'll have to use just one tiny cookie so that you're not asked to make this choice again.