New monitoring system for the printing industry

19.07.2022 Where maximum quality is expected in the printing process, but the price should still be moderate, an inexpensive, simple and at the same time reliable monitoring system is indispensable. With BST PROView, BST GmbH (Bielefeld, Germany) launched an individually adaptable system for video web monitoring at the beginning of the year that enables reliable print image monitoring even at a maximum web speed of 1000 metres per minute.

The BST PROView monitoring system.
© Photo: BST
The BST PROView monitoring system.

BST has thus developed an easy-to-install and modularly expandable system that is suitable for both narrow and wide web applications thanks to its traverse mounting.

Real-time monitoring of the print image

The new BST PROView video web inspection system monitors the print image of labels, shrink sleeves or decorative products in real time. At print speeds of 1000 metres per minute, BST's latest camera-based monitoring system visualises the print image precisely and reliably during every print process. Specifically, BST PROView visualises not only minimal colour deviations but also missing varnishes, colour haze or mechanical defects. With the optional Smart Register function, the register in CI-Flexo presses is precisely preset. With the help of the BST PROView, faults can be detected at an early stage and their causes rectified immediately. This reduces waste to a minimum and increases the economic efficiency of printing systems.

Simple and flexible

"BST PROView is simple over its entire lifetime: easy to install, easy to operate, easy to maintain, uncomplicated to expand and software updates," explains Volker Reinholdt, product manager at BST. This consistent simplicity is the result of savvy development: with PROView, BST offers a cost-effective and user-friendly monitoring system that, with its numerous functions, enables reliable control of the print image even in the basic version. For example, a long-life LED flash illuminates the material webs homogeneously. If required, flash-throughs, varnish flashes and UV flashes can be added. This allows BST PROView to display the front-to-back register, varnishes and UV fluorescent inks.

Installation fast, operation intuitive, maintenance rare

Operation is designed for maximum simplicity: It is intuitive via a multi-touch panel and the print image is displayed on a high-resolution 22-inch monitor. There, live and reference images can be displayed simultaneously via split screen - according to the saved settings for image section, zoom, iris and position in the direction of web travel – and compared directly with each other. The split-screen function thus enables a continuous visual comparison of the current print with the good sample.

Whether in standard or advanced version, all components are easy to install via plug-and-play and can be quickly integrated into the existing system architecture. PROView is available with two camera sizes: the large version shows areas of 225 x 169mm and has a 16x zoom. The smaller version shows sections of 125 x 94mm and has a 10x zoom. With its modular design, BST PROView can be adapted to very different usage profiles. In addition to the choice between two camera units and different lighting units, the manufacturer offers various expansion options. "With the additional options, the web-processing industries increase the performance of the respective system in exactly the way that best suits the specific application," says the product manager.

All system settings for a printing process can be saved as a job. Among other things, this enables remote monitoring of production via the screenshot gallery. Here, up to 50 live images can be saved per job. The information can be accessed at any time and from anywhere via the respective company network.

Additional options for best support in operation

With the help of Haze Guard, what is invisible to the human eye is made visible. By raising the contrast, it visualises defects with weak contrasts such as colour haze, scumming or missing varnish. In addition, the colour monitoring module detects colour deviations in comparison with predefined colour values. The measuring points can be freely selected.

Another optional function is the semi-automatic CI register control. It offers automatic register setting when the press is started up and fast and precise support when register is set again after a press stop. Without the need for additional register marks, it then assigns the printing colour and all other colours to the printing units via the monitor.