Nanotech 2011

Expanding Capabilities of a Machine Vision System for Analysis of Drops-in-flight

Y. Kipman, P. Mehta, S-W. Wang
ImageXpert Inc., US

Keywords: inkjet, drop size, print head characterization

Abstract:

Measuring in-flight characteristics of ink drops under different conditions can provide insight into relationships and interactions, helping drive system and consumable optimization for manufacturers of inkjet heads, head driver electronics, inks, and integrated printing and material deposition systems. Previous papers have discussed JetXpert, ImageXpert’s integrated, machine-vision system for the measurement of drops-in-flight. Developers and researchers face considerable overhead to test print heads including procuring appropriate drive electronics and ink delivery systems for each head. And, there is the ongoing push to improve efficiency by decreasing operator time necessary for data collection. In order to expand the capabilities of the JetXpert system, ImageXpert has developed a “universal” ink delivery system for use with nearly any print head to allow for more efficient and cost effective evaluation of print head performance. By adding one axis of automated motion, sequential inspection of each jet across a print head can be performed automatically, minimizing inspection time and associated costs. Droplet characteristics including drop trajectory, velocity, radius and volume can be measured. Volume of drop series and ligaments can also be reported. This paper will give an overview of the JetXpert system including the motion option, and detail the newly developed ink supply system.
 

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