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Solid Ink Printed Braille with UV curable phase-change ink overcoat

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000208394D
Publication Date: 2011-Jul-06
Document File: 3 page(s) / 3M

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

This idea proposes the use a Solid Ink (Hot Melt) printer to provide an inexpensive means to produce robust Braille output digitally. The advantages include personalization, accessibility to home users, and the ease of combining Braille with regular printing. To achieve the required thickness, multiple layers of ink are applied to the substrate. To achieve distinct levels of robustness, this idea suggests overcoating solid ink Braille prints with an ultraviolet (UV) curable solid ink overcoat. By varying the composition of the overcoat, it is possible to create printed Braille dots with a range of hardness and robustness. At one extreme, the entire printed page can be flood coated with a plurality of clear UV coatings to provide maximum robustness. Using a thin overcoat, the output would be suitable for short term single use applications. A thicker coat, obtained by applying multiple layers of UV overcoat, would also vary the robustness of the final product.

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Solid Ink Printed Braille with UV curable phase-change ink overcoat

This idea proposes the use a Solid Ink (Hot Melt) printer to provide an inexpensive means to produce robust Braille output digitally.  The advantages include personalization, accessibility to home users, and the ease of combining Braille with regular printing. To achieve the required thickness, multiple layers of ink are applied to the substrate. To achieve distinct levels of robustness, this idea suggests overcoating solid ink Braille prints with an ultraviolet (UV) curable solid ink overcoat. By varying the composition of the overcoat, it is possible to create printed Braille dots with a range of hardness and robustness. At one extreme, the entire printed page can be flood coated with a plurality of clear UV coatings to provide maximum robustness. Using a thin overcoat, the output would be suitable for short term single use applications.  A thicker coat, obtained by applying multiple layers of UV overcoat, would also vary the robustness of the final product.

The viability of this idea was confirmed as follows:

Printing of Solid Ink Braille Dots

Low energy Cyan solid ink was printed at 120°C directly onto CX select paper using a modified solid ink printer (paper taped directly to drum, no transfuse step). The drum temperature was 55°C, and 40 layers were printed on top of one another. Using a micrometer, feature heights of 0.5 mm were measured. Images of printed solid ink Braille dots are shown below in Figure 1.

Fig...