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Jun 21, 2001 12:00 AM

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MAN Roland held a technology open house June 14 at its U.S. headquarters in Westmont, IL. The open house provided an opportunity for customers to meet Yves Rogivue, the new MAN Roland CEO for North America, and learn more about the PECOM digital workflow integration technology and the DICOweb press. More than 250 customers and trade press representatives attended the event.

The Roland 200, 300 and 700 presses were demonstrated during the morning session of the event. The R200 is a 13,000 sph, 20 x 29-inch sheetfed press that handles a wide range of stocks for printers entering the four-color market.

The R300 perfecting, half-format press is available in two- to eight-color configurations. It runs at 15,000 sph and can be equipped with up to three perfectors and a coater.

The R700 features a double-size impression cylinder and touchless sheet transfer. It runs at 15,000 sph in straight production mode and 12,000 sph in perfecting mode. It is available in two- to 10-color configurations.

In his opening remarks, Rogivue stressed the transition print is making from a craft to "industry-like" manufacturing. "Print has a future. Print is the future," he said. The exec emphasized his point with an overview of MAN Roland's computer integrated manufacturing (CIM) solution, the PECOM network.

The PECOM Press Center control console for sheetfed presses is available with the Roland 300, 500, 700 and 900 presses. From the PECOM console, a printer can control and monitor multiple presses; information can be networked between other operating levels in the plant.

In his remarks on the future of print, Gerd Finkbeiner, chairman of the board for MAN Roland Druckmaschinen AG, declared that the "iron-only" era is over. "Now is the time [for networking systems like] PECOM." Finkbeiner predicted that, after networking the pressroom, commercial printing will follow the example of newspapers and network the entire operation.

The morning session also featured a demonstration of press monitoring software MAN Roland began installing at RIT in May. With the software, RIT students can watch live press training and demonstrations at MAN Roland's Westmont facility from their classrooms. Monitor displays and "real-time" web cams will follow live print jobs.

At an evening reception, Dr. Josef Schneider, vice president of Digital Printing Systems and "father of the DICOweb press," stressed the open platform of the press, saying its unofficial motto is "Don't fence me in."

The DICOweb can image, erase and re-image a plate-like cylinder on-press. Its format versatility fits the paper size to the product, rather than the product fitting the paper size. It also has platform flexibility, which allows the printer to change the color, format and printing technology of the press, as the customer's needs change.

Helgi Schmidt-Liermann, former MAN Roland CEO of North America, also made a special appearance at the event. Finkbeiner acknowledged his dedicated service, noting, "Products, machines and services are important, but the main thing in business is people."