While the Acimga Rotogravure Printing Group is busy drafting the text of the new ISO standard on packaging, to be presented in October, the activities of the many Working Groups of the standardization institute continue and some important projects are coming to fruition.

di Carlo Carnelli

The Working Groups of the ISO Technical Committees active in the Graphic Arts have also suffered pandemic delays and, between one postponement and another, many projects have fallen behind. This has not prevented us from achieving some important objectives and unblocking projects that are sure to have an impact on the converter community. Here is a small review.

Offset inks: label news

The ISO/TC 130 committee has just published ISO 22934:2021 Graphic technology – Communication of offset ink properties. It specifies which offset ink properties must be communicated by the supplier to the printer, as they are essential for optimized print production planning and intended use of the final product. Food safety aspects and other requirements, such as the safety of children’s toys, are not part of the scope of this document and will continue to be communicated through product safety data sheets.

Digital proofs

ISO/TC 130 has also published an update to standard 12647-8:2021 Graphic technology – Process control for the production of halftone color separations, proofs and production prints – Part 8: Validation printing processes (proofs) working directly with digital data. Reports the requirements necessary to determine the conformance of systems that produce a paper validation print (proof) directly from digital data in order to simulate the intended appearance of the printed material under a characterized printing condition.

JWG14 Goals

The group working on print quality measurement systems has produced three useful updates to the ISO/TS 18621 family of standards.

  • Color gamut analysis (ISO/TS 18621-11): following the 2019 publication on how to define gamut using quantitative criteria, some issues in the dark areas of the color gamut and other mathematical details are now overcome.
  • Mottling (M-Score, ISO/TS 18621-21): the 2020 standard on “Measuring 1D Distortions of Macroscopic Uniformity Using Scanning Spectrophotometers” overcomes critical issues inherent in confusing indices for rows and columns et al. Final publication is expected in late 2021.
  • Grainness (Z-Score, ISO/TS 18621-22): officially launched the project to modify the standard on the evaluation of color graininess. The proposed changes have been incorporated into the Fogra method and the final meeting will be held at the end of 2021.
  • Last but not least, a new project has been started that deals with measuring unidimensional streaks. This document will also be useful for companies that integrate digital printheads on an analogue press.

WG3: The future of ISO 12647-2

Probably it won’t be ready until 2023 and beyond, but the integration of calibration based on near neutral grays (NNC or “G7”) into the established procedure (“Equal TVI”) will be far-reaching. Based on a defined solid coloration (for CMYKRGBW) targets for “Equal TVI” or “Near Neutral Grey” are provided – for currently 9 classes/types of substrates. Furthermore for high quality coated substrates a compromise was found between FOGRA51 and CRPC6, where both calibrations lead to the same print output. For all other substrates the different calibrations will have different outcomes, as is already the case today.