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EXTENDING THE LIFE OF A THERMAL INK JET PRINTING ARRAY USING PRINT LINE ROTATION

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000026359D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Aug-31
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Apr-05
Document File: 2 page(s) / 67K

Publishing Venue

Xerox Disclosure Journal

Abstract

In existing ink jet printheads, such as, for example, one having 48 nozzles and therefore 48 heater elements, an approximately 1/6 inch high vertical array is provided. This array is scanned horizontally and the appropriate elements are enabled to produce a printed line. The print head is then moved vertically one scan line and the process is repeated. Because of the head arrangement, typically certain groups of nozzle combinations receive a higher number of operations and thus wear (erosion, impedance change, ink droplet non-uniformity, etc.).

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XEROX DISCLOSURE JOURNAL

EXTENDING THE LiFE OF A THERMAL INK JET PRINTING ARRAY USING PRINT LINE ROTATION
Frederick A. Donahue

Proposed Classification
U.S. C1.346/75 Int. C1. GOlD 15/18

In existing ink jet printheads, such as, for example, one having 48 nozzles and therefore 48 heater elements, an approximately 1/6 inch high vertical array is provided. This array is scanned horizontally and the appropriate elements are enabled to produce a printed line. The print head is then moved vertically one scan line and the process is repeated. Because of the head arrangement, typically certain groups of nozzle combinations receive a higher number of operations and thus wear (erosion, impedance change, ink droplet non- uniformity, etc.).

To improve printhead life, a time multiplexing technique is used to cause the average operation of each individual nozzle to be equal. The image generation circuitry of the printer is modified such that the subsequent scan lines being printed slowly rotate horizontally through the printhead elements. It does not matter if this rotation is top to bottom or bottom to top. Depending on the interline spacing of certain font styles or point sizes, the characters will naturally rotate top to bottom or bottom to top. Accurate vertical stitching is necessary to produce high quality images, since the text (characters) is forced to reside (for most cases) on different scan lines. This technique could also be used in thermal transfer, pin printing, o...