Following KBA Comet installations at The Gold Coast Bulletin in Molendinar, Queensland, in 2004 and at a new printing plant in Hobart, Tasmania, last year, Australian media major News Limited recently placed a third order for KBA's popular B/B tower press, this time for its Darwin plant. The Comet will start printing News Limited's Northern Territory News at the end of next year.
The Northern Territory News, a tabloid title launched in 1952, has a circulation of around 47,000 copies per day on weekdays and 55,000 on Saturdays. The paper is printed in numerous local editions and distributed throughout the Northern Territory, which covers an area roughly as big as Spain, France and Italy combined, but has a population of approximately 250,000. The main sources of income for the region are mining, beef cattle and tourism. The News' distribution centre is Darwin, the capital city with some 120,000 inhabitants. The new Comet will also print other News Limited titles: The Sunday Territorian, the Northern Territory Business Review, regional editions, pre-prints and the Darwin Sun.
The press will comprise four Pastoline reelstands, four printing towers and a double jaw folder with a 2:3:3 cylinder ratio. It will have a 578mm (22.75in) cut-off and be able to handle web widths of 630 to 870mm (24.85 - 34.25in), with 810mm (31.85in) the standard. Maximum output in straight production will be 75,000 full-colour tabloid copies. The contract also includes two KBA consoles with a presetting system, a RIP interface and a diagnostics PC for remote maintenance.
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