Printing Technology



Father of Printing - Johannes Gutenberg :


1395 – February 3, 1468) was a German blacksmith, goldsmith, printer, and publisher who introduced printing to Europe. His invention of mechanical movable type printing started the Printing Revolution and is widely regarded as the most important event of the modern period.[1] It played a key role in the development of the Renaissance, Reformation, the Age of Enlightenment, and the Scientific Revolution and laid the material basis for the modern knowledge-based economy and the spread of learning to the masses.
Gutenberg was the first European to use movable type printing, in around 1439. Among his many contributions to printing are: the invention of a process for mass-producing movable type; the use of oil-based ink; and the use of a wooden printing press similar to the agricultural screw presses of the period. His truly epochal invention was the combination of these elements into a practical system which allowed the mass production of printed books and was economically viable for printers and readers alike. Gutenberg’s method for making type is traditionally considered to have included a type metal alloy and a hand mould for casting type.
The use of movable type was a marked improvement on the handwritten manuscript, which was the existing method of book production in Europe, and upon woodblock printing, and revolutionized European book-making. Gutenberg’s printing technology spread rapidly throughout Europe and later the world.

Source : Wikipedia

1Employment/Potential Business :

Demand for printed products are growing largely all over the world. Today’s world is an advertising era. Advertising
needs the most effective forms of communications. Printing Technology and graphic arts is the most challenging, universally used, multi effective, multidimensional medium of communication. As the printing technology has advanced, to evolve, it takes a good deal of time.


Prepress has come a long way from hand setting, hot metal, phototype setting, tele-type setting to present day desktop publishing. In the same way, from hand engraving on wood blocks, wood cuts, copper plate engraving, steel die-stamping, we have come through process camera to image setters and scanners, inner or outer drum or flatbed or high end scanners. It looks as though films not be used in future as computer to plate (Ctp) has come into vogue. One step has been abolished and expensive silver-based films will not be used. Kodak Polychrome plates, for example is the answer to computer to plate.

The next is logically computer to-machine. On the plates cylinders characters and images are formed direct from the computer and after printing the image is wiped clean with a liquid as we do the characters written by chalk on a blackboard by the duster.

The latest step is Xerox which means from original to printed product. This has narrowed down the distance from prepress to printing cancelling all the interviewing operations.

3Printing  :

Printing processes are based on certain principles such as relief process letterpress and flexography, intaglio process like photo-gravure (rotogravure) and planography, chemical process, indirect process such as offset lithography based on the principle that grease and water, ink and water, oil and water will reject each other and will not readily mix. In sheet fed offset, we have today as many as 10 ptg. units whereas 4 was the norm yesterday. Why are we having more than 4 units for the CMYK colours? Because we want to produce special colours such as Biscuit tint, flesh tint, metallic silver or gold Pantone special colors all of which cannot be obtained by mixing other colors. In addition, we have UV coating units to enhance the printed image.

Gravure and Flexography Process of Printing are major Printing Techniques for printing for packaging. Although, Printing Industry in our country has undergone considerable progress, yet package printing itself is relative a new area. The achievements are commendable but the final quality and capability leaves much to be desired. Packaging industry in India has excellent potential.

5Digital Future :

Today, we have digital camera without film and we can alter the click image on the computer. For example, a person can have moustache or clean shaven face; his pocket can be changed from right to left and his parting of the hair on the head from the left to right or even backward. Such are the possibilities in Digital camera and Digital printing. We do not have the traditional plate cylinder, blanket cylinder and impression cylinder or even plates. The image is directly transferred from computer to an inkjet or a bubble jet upto 6 colours and on substrates different from ordinary paper and board.

© 2014 IPT
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