Flexography is a conventional relief printing system that makes use of flexible resilient printing forms to transfer fluid inks. The versatility of the flexographic printing system allows for print to be made onto many different types of substrates, such as absorbent and non-absorbent materials. As each substrate has its own unique characteristic, the reproduction of printed graphics can be affected by a rather high tone value increase (TVI). To maintain reproduction of graphics, it is necessary to perform an adjustment to the original tone value. This adjustment is carried out via the use of dot gain compensation curves that are applied during file rasterization, imaging and plate-making operations.
This paper describes a simplified procedure designed to determine and apply plate compensation curves within any flexographic workflow environment. In doing so, it outlines the best use of tonal value measurement according to ISO 20654:2017, also known as SCTV.