Browse Prior Art Database

Thin Film Printing Head Structures

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000047964D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Dec-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-08
Document File: 2 page(s) / 14K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Cuomo, JJ: AUTHOR [+4]

Abstract

Common to electrochromic, electroerosion, resistive ribbon and thermal printing, there is the need of having a series of multiple styli electrodes, all of which are intelligently addressed with voltage pulses against a common reference electrode. The resulting current flowing between the latter and the addressed stylus produces the desired printing effect: in electrochromics, the effect is a color change through an electrochemical reaction; in electroerosion, it is the current producing heat and evaporation of a metal layer; in resistive ribbon and thermal printing, it is also a thermal effect either transferring ribbon ink into the paper or just changing the color of a thermal compound on the paper surface, respectively.

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Page 1 of 2

Thin Film Printing Head Structures

Common to electrochromic, electroerosion, resistive ribbon and thermal printing, there is the need of having a series of multiple styli electrodes, all of which are intelligently addressed with voltage pulses against a common reference electrode. The resulting current flowing between the latter and the addressed stylus produces the desired printing effect: in electrochromics, the effect is a color change through an electrochemical reaction; in electroerosion, it is the current producing heat and evaporation of a metal layer; in resistive ribbon and thermal printing, it is also a thermal effect either transferring ribbon ink into the paper or just changing the color of a thermal compound on the paper surface, respectively. Up to the present, a variety of printhead structures have been proposed emphasizing the advantages of particular configurations, but all of them mainly based on the use of discrete pins or wires as printing elements. The use of discrete wires may present serious limitations, mainly the printhead becomes expensive and difficult to adapt to mass processing fabrication techniques. Furthermore, it also has the disadvantage of limited resolution which is restricted to the size of the wire. When resolution is increased to high values, the wire cross section has to be very small, and corrosion problems make the printhead useless. Multilayer thin film printhead devices having the following structure are proposed. A substrate is provided which has high electronic conductivity, e.g., a doped Si wafer can be very suitable. The substrate constitutes the reference electrode plane, and could also be the site of the logic driving module. In general applications, this substrate can also be made of a thin film slice of any suitable, stable metallic material. An insulating layer deposited on the substrate serves to separate the reference plane from the active print elements. This layer has a thickness from 2 to 4 mils, and possesses e...