Waterless lithography is one of the printing processes that was developed around 1968. It has a strong impact in the current printing industry. Like other printing processes, waterless lithography has both advantages and disadvantages. It is said that waterless lithography can print with more consistency and less dot gain than conventional lithography. However, it has one significant disadvantage, currently there is only one waterless lithographic plate supplier in the industry. There is very little quantitative data describing the waterless lithographic process to support the arguments that waterless lithography prints with more consistency and less dot gain. There is even a report that conflicts with such arguments. Consequently, this research investigates waterless lithography to provide more quantitative data and a better understanding with its conventional counterpart. The purpose of this research was to compare a process capability index (consistency) in terms of solid ink density and the magnitude of dot gain between waterless lithography and conventional lithography. This research performed a series of test runs in an academic environment. The densities of the sample press sheets were measured and used to calculate dot gain. Several statistical methods were used to analyze data and compute process capability indices. From the data analysis, it was found that waterless lithography is only as good as, but not better than, conventional lithography in terms of process capability of solid ink density. Also, waterless lithography does not produce significantly less dot gain than conventional lithography.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Lithography--Printing; Lithography--Metal plate processes; Printing ink; Color printing
Department, Program, or Center
School of Print Media (CIAS)
Pichitgarnka, Chanassa, "A Comparison between waterless lithography and conventional lithography" (1994). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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