Clemson University’s Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics revamps an industry favorite

CLEMSON, South Carolina — The Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics at Clemson University has revamped a popular industry seminar: Digital Plates and Screening for Flexo.

The course will be offered on May 30-31 and attendees will receive a behind-the-scenes look at optimizing all variables in the plate selection process: Round top or flat top? Hard or soft durometer? Which of three-dozen screening options should you choose? How do you determine your minimum dot?

During this one-and-a-half-day seminar, attendees will conduct several print trials touching on all of those variables on multiple substrates, with both UV and water-based inks. Working with industry experts, attendees will learn how each variable interacts to affect print outcomes and develop an understanding of how to achieve optimum and repeatable results on every plate, every press run.

“With the constant advancements in screening, imaging and plate technologies, it is important to understand the best options for your unique needs,” said Brad Gasque, technical service consultant for DuPont Advanced Printing. “This seminar will be great to learn about these newest advancements as well as how to optimize and keep platemaking in control.”

Hands-on sessions will include Plate, Stickyback and Screening Variables on Various Substrates; Plate Imaging, Evaluation and Process Control; Establishing Optimal Screening and Calibration Curves; Plate Exposing, Processing, Measurement and Process Control.

Presentation topics will include The Digital Workflow; Imaging, Exposing and Processing Options; Plate Optimization and Calibration; Screening Options; Process Control throughout the Digital Plate Workflow.

Esko, a longtime partner of the Sonoco Institute, recently donated a new piece of equipment to be utilized publicly for the first time at the Digital Plates seminar. The Esko XPS Crystal optimally combines UV main and back exposure. Unlike UV frames using lightbulbs fluctuating in output, the XPS Crystal uses UV LEDs that don’t need warmup time and always emit consistent radiation. A simultaneous and optimally controlled UV main and back exposure produces highly consistent digital flexo plates.

Industry registrants can receive a $100 discount per person when registering three or more people to attend. Clemson University students are welcome to attend the seminar for free. For details or to register, visit or contact Bobby Congdon (assistant director) at


The Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics
The Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics uniquely combines the synergies that exist between the graphic communications and packaging design departments at Clemson University. Founded in 2009, it is the only university program in the country with this one-of-a-kind, multidisciplinary approach to packaging. The institute leverages its core campus strengths along with the knowledge and participation of its industry partners to make significant contributions at three levels – as an academic stimulator, an industry resource for training and research, and a driving force to bring new technologies and innovations to the packaging and graphics markets. To find out more, visit or follow the institute on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Connect with Bobby Congdon, assistant director on LinkedIn.