CONFERENCE ON ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY
Nearly 100 colour thermal transfer printing industry luminaries, manufacturers, suppliers and end users crowded the Loews Ventana Canyon resort in Arizona for the fourth annual Association of Colour Thermal Transfer Technology (ACT) conference to view technology advancements, discuss synergistic relationships and help shape the market’s future.
Over a two-day span, 15 papers were presented outlining technical breakthroughs aimed at proliferating colour thermal transfer printing in several key markets including the wide format (posters, exhibits, banners, billboards, outdoor signage, flexible packaging and point of sale displays), vehicle graphics, ID cards, colour tag and label markets.
ACT’s newest member, Matan I Systems of Israel showcased their Sprinter 36-inch colour thermal transfer printer which is scheduled for official introduction later in the first quarter, while Atlantek demonstrated the latest breakthrough in photo ID printing technology. The conference finale featured a lively presentation from Jay Ansburg, president of Auto-Graph Design, Californian vehicle graphics specialist, who uses colour thermal transfer technology to produce striking and durable images for show cars and fleet vehicles.
‘Colour thermal transfer printing is one technology that is actually ahead of the markets it serves – it is here now and it works,’ observed Dick Yisha of ID Images during his presentation on colour thermal transfer technology for the flexible packaging marketplace. ‘This is a very typical situation in that powerful solutions exist today, which could greatly assist many applications, yet many users are still unaware of the opportunities. ‘In his keynote address on the colour thermal transfer marketplace, ACT executive director Rick Wallace pointed at a paradigm shift surrounding the technology.
‘Colour thermal transfer technology is moving from the carpeted area to the concrete area of most businesses,’ said Wallace in his opening remarks. ‘More and more industrial applications are taking advantage of the technology’s superiority over ink jet and laser printing in the areas of reliability, durability, ultra-violet light resistance, colour brilliance and speed. The attendees at this conference mirror this shift in representing a significant cross section of application usage and technology development to serve associated markets. As an industry we are making the overall market ‘pie’ much bigger and all of us are enjoying a larger piece of that pie through continued technology advancements and increased awareness of new applications.’
The Association of Colour Thermal Transfer Technology (ACT) is an industry consortium comprised of manufacturers and suppliers of colour thermal transfer printers. ACT’s charter is to encourage research and development efforts within the industry which advance the technology, educate the industry on the advantages of colour thermal transfer technology and promote colour thermal transfer over competing technologies.