Silicon micromachined Continuous Inkjet (CIJ) printhead with integral deflection and guttering

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Date of Original Version



Continuous Inkjet (CIJ) printing technology offers an ideal solution to meet the growing demands of the commercial digital printing market because of its advantages in speed, cost, and reliability. Here we present progress on the development of a new integrated CIJ printhead that can be batch manufactured using standard silicon microfabrication and 3D wafer assembly techniques. The printhead consists of a network of microfluidic channels for drop generation, drop selection, and guttering. The drop generator is a microelectromechanical system (MEMS) fabricated using CMOS-compatible processes. Typical operation of the drop generator involves breakup of a jet stream into small and large drops using thermal stimulation. The drops are then sorted using an air cross-flow, with the small nonprint drops sent to the gutter for recirculation and the large print drops sent to the print media. Laminating individually etched silicon wafers creates the channels for air cross-flow and guttering of the nonprint ink drops. Details on design, fabrication, and characterization of the integrated CIJ printhead are provided, and challenges and future directions are discussed.

Publication Title

International Conference on Digital Printing Technologies

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