Dr. Kiran Deshpande is an engineer in printing technology from PVG’s College of Engineering & Technology Pune (India), has a MSc in Digital Color Imaging & PhD in Color Science from London College of Communication. Kiran has published and presented many scientific papers and articles in the field of Color Science and Imaging. He is actively involved in several international standardization activities such as ISO, CIE (International Commission on Illumination), ICC (International Color Consortium), Idealliance and FOGRA. He is a chair of the CIE Technical Committee TC 8-13 on “Color Gamuts for Output Media.”

He has worked worldwide across several printing plants on strategic development & roll-out of color management including Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) printing implementations. He has been providing training and consultancy on all aspects of color management to different stakeholders in the packaging supply chain e.g. brand owners, designers, pre-press, ink-room and press-room. He got “MacDonald-Green Award” from the Color Group of Great Britain and “Cactus Award for Best Interactive Paper” at the Color & Imaging Conference in Boston. He has worked for companies covering wide spectrum in the industry – like Xerox, Esko & Multi Packaging Solutions (WestRock). Currently he is working at Siegwerk as a Global Senior Expert Color Management where he is leading a color management program across all regions and business units worldwide.

Expanded Color Gamut printing for a narrow web Flexographic press

Akshay Joshi, P. V. G’s College of Engineering & Technology; Kiran Deshpande, Siegwerk; Panthala Selvan, Pressman Solutions

Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) printing has been growing in the packaging printing industry globally. In this study, we implemented the ECG printing with CMYKOGV inks for a narrow-web Flexographic printing process. This paper explores the key aspects of implementing ECG printing and performs gamut analysis by comparing the gamuts of CMYKOGV and CRPC6. The results show that the ECG printing process can be successfully implemented for a narrow-web Flexographic process with an acceptable accuracy of spot colors

Introduction

The global self-adhesive labels market size is projected to grow from USD 46.5 billion in 2020 to USD 59.2 billion by 2025.1With the expanding pool of brand choices in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) Industry, brand managers and designers are searching for ways to attract customers to their respective brands. Flexography printing is a widely used process for label printing as it provides consistent color reproduction at greater machine speed.

Colors used in packaging of the product contribute the highest percentage to the buying decision of consumers. Traditionally, the CMYK process can produce a limited range of colors, hence spot colors have been used for achieving colors outside the CMYK gamut. However, printing with spot colors is not cost-effective and comes with its own challenges such as higher job changeover times and wastage.2

There arises a need to implement the Expanded Color Gamut (ECG) printing that utilizes seven colors namely CMYKOGV. There have been several studies exploring the ECG printing.2-12The ECG printing gives a higher quality of work due to a wider range of colors and larger color gamut.3The increased gamut with ECG leads to more color options for labels and packaging.

The motivation behind this study is to realize the practical implementation of ECG printing for a narrow-web flexographic process and to understand the key aspects and challenges during the implementation.