Tilia Labs’ (Ottawa, Ontario) release of Phoenix 5.0 improves imposition and planning automation with a new Plan engine capable of finding optimal multi-layout jobs across hundreds of orders in minutes – along with Enfocus Switch integration, cutting-edge nesting algorithms, die template searching and more. Plan is “the ultimate ganging tool” for estimating and imposing large numbers of orders by processing hundred of items “at unprecedented speeds” to find the most cost-effective, multi-form layouts for both nested and square-cut work. Plan technology has the ability to search millions of combinations quickly across available presses, stocks and die templates while taking into account minimum/maximum overruns, press ink limitations, due dates and other requirements to ensure the plans generated are accurate and ready for real-world production.
Version 5.0 features a new way to automate planning and imposition. It integrates with the popular Enfocus Switch workflow solution via the Phoenix Switch Connector automation module and Phoenix Plan Switch Configurator. The Plan Configurator works by collecting individual orders coming into the workflow (and therefore, Enfocus Switch), along with their associated quantities, stock, grain, spacing, and so on. The files are then sent to Phoenix Plan, which goes to work finding the best multi-form jobs. Output options include imposed PDF, JDF, Phoenix jobs, and PDF or XML-based reports. Also new in Phoenix 5.0 is the REST Web Service module, a comprehensive REST-based web service API that’s “the first of its kind” for imposition or planning software. All tools and media libraries are available, enabling seamless integration with other vendors or in-house, custom workflows.
Next, the ganging interface has undergone a complete overhaul. Impose, Populate, Optimize and Plan ganging tools have all been merged into a new ganging panel and a single click switches between them, allowing users to quickly generate new layouts while improving existing ones. The new interface also features an enhanced results list with more statistics, new sorting options, and a new pop-up window to drill into details on each layout within a plan. Phoenix 5.0 also features improvements to the nesting algorithm used for ganging non-rectangular items, new job properties (such as total cost, average waste and press time), and new product properties (such as due date, group, min/max overruns, front/back inks), and much more.