Browse Prior Art Database

Flexible Thermal Printhead

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000041346D
Original Publication Date: 1984-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-02
Document File: 2 page(s) / 47K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Graham, AE: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

The drawing shows a view from the front of a printhead having separate units of polyimide under metal electrodes held by adhesive. Each polyimide unit is about the size of each of the electrode. The separate polyimide units provide a significantly more flexible printhead compared to a printhead in which the corresponding polyimide is continuous. The printhead is one in which the open ends of metal electrodes (shown in the drawing) contact a resistive ribbon to selectably apply current to the ribbon. Thermoplastic ink on the opposite side of the ribbon is rendered flowable by the heat generated in the resistive substrate of the ribbon and forms characters on paper or the like. The system shown in U. S. Patent 4,345,845 is illustrative.

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Flexible Thermal Printhead

The drawing shows a view from the front of a printhead having separate units of polyimide under metal electrodes held by adhesive. Each polyimide unit is about the size of each of the electrode. The separate polyimide units provide a significantly more flexible printhead compared to a printhead in which the corresponding polyimide is continuous. The printhead is one in which the open ends of metal electrodes (shown in the drawing) contact a resistive ribbon to selectably apply current to the ribbon. Thermoplastic ink on the opposite side of the ribbon is rendered flowable by the heat generated in the resistive substrate of the ribbon and forms characters on paper or the like. The system shown in U. S. Patent 4,345,845 is illustrative. Lack of flexibility and resulting non-compliance by the electrodes may result in loss of contact between electrodes and the ribbon, causing arcing and accumulation of debris on the printhead. This is especially true when the contacting surfaces are relatively rough. The printhead shown in the drawing has a significant depth in which the cross section is substantially the same as the outside view shown. The flexible characteristics to that depth primarily control compliance. As shown, the printhead has a top layer of polyimide, a second lower layer of adhesive surrounding the separate metal electrodes, and a third layer of adhesive contacting a relatively large body of silicon rubber and holding the polyimide uni...