Highcon is set to introduce a new portfolio line-up at drupa 2024, addressing the ‘fastest-growing’ segments of paperboard packaging, as the company looks to prioritise productivity, efficiency and quality for its customers.

The new Highcon Beam 3 has been developed to respond to the feedback of both customers and prospects. Explained to include new innovations and enhancements, customers can be more productive and address a broader range of applications, now able to run up to 10 jobs with an average run length of 1000 sheets every shift.

Prior to the first Beam 3 shipping to drupa 2024, the company will be performing a field upgrade to an existing Beam 2 system at Eurographic in Poland. ‘We’re excited to be the first customer to receive the productivity and quality boost package that will bring Beam 3 performance to our system,’ said Bartosz Nowakowski, general manager of Eurographic Group. ‘The surge in production per shift is poised to make a significant impact on our operations.’

The new Highcon Beam Writer, compatible with all Highcon Beam systems already installed, will enable customers to create creasing rules using Highcon’s proprietary Dart system and fifth-generation consumables offline. For every 100 jobs per month, Beam Writer can free up more than 16 hours of Beam capacity, or two full shifts, improving productivity and increasing capacity.

Charles Linney, director of Linney, said, ‘I’ve always believed that there is a place for an offline Dart writing system. Although the current inline system works very well, the offline Beam Writer could save us 10 minutes per job, which equates to over 50 hours a month.’

Highcon Beam 3 with the optional new Beam Writer for offline writing of Dart foils, is said to allow customers to produce around 50% more per shift than with Beam 2, while delivering higher and more consistent quality.

Highcon Vulcan

Highcon Vulcan is a concept machine under development

Also set to be introduced is Vulcan, said to address a ‘painful gap’ amongst the current mainstream corrugated production options. Vulcan is a code name for the machine that has a maximum sheet size of 1.4 x 1.7m (55 x 66in) and supports boards up to 5mm in thickness, including microflute, B-, C-, and EB-flutes. Like all Highcon systems, Vulcan will combine physical creasing with laser cutting, and will have a maximum throughput of 3000 full-size sheets per hour (up to 7000sqm/hr or 75,000sqft/hr). It will have a job changeover time of 5-10 minutes.

Four ‘foundation customers’, including Thimm, The BoxMaker, UDS and Grupak (Mexico), placed deposits on Vulcan systems in 2022. In 2023, Schumacher Packaging joined the foundation customer programme and signed an MOU to purchase five to 10 units of Vulcan from Highcon before 2030. Vulcan will be a commercially available part of the Highcon portfolio by drupa 2028.

‘Highcon’s Vulcan will find a very broad footprint across the corrugated industry, complementing analogue die cutting and solving the intractable problems of fast reaction, small orders and eliminating MOQs,’ said Richard Brown, president of The BoxMaker.

Bjoern Schumacher, CEO of Schumacher Packaging said, ‘We are very pleased with our Highcon Beam 2C, but Vulcan is the system that can start the inevitable digitalisation of corrugated finishing. The demonstration of the prototype that I saw in Israel last June [2023], convinced me that Vulcan will be game-changing for us.’

An upgrade to the Highcon Beam 2C will also be present at drupa 2024. Based on a running speed that is 15% faster than the previous model, the upgraded Highcon Beam 2C offers higher productivity for corrugated customers with faster sheet throughput. When used in conjunction with the new optional Beam Writer, it will offer corrugated customers approximately 50% higher productivity per shift for typical customer job baskets. It also includes the Digital die cutting Workflow Package (DWP) for smoother, effective and automated integration into a site’s production workflow.

Highcon will display its technologies at its booth in Hall 9 B24 at drupa.

Read the May/June issue of Digital Labels & Packaging for a full preview of digital’s role at drupa 2024 – register.dlpmag.com