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Posted: Feb 14, 2012

Konica Minolta Introduces the World's First Inkjet Printhead for Printed Electronics

(Nanowerk News) Konica Minolta IJ Technologies, Inc. (Konica Minolta) announced today that the company developed KM128SNG-MB, a high precision inkjet printhead, with the first use of MEMS technology at Konica Minolta. KM128SNG-MB delivers tiny drop size (1 picoliter) for the first time for printed electronics applications, and is planned to go on sale in sample quantities this spring.
This next-generation inkjet printhead is manufactured using silicon MEMS technology that is also used in semiconductor processing. This technology made possible the successful development of a small printhead structure (38 mm wide, 128 nozzles in one row) that can eject tiny drops of ink. Careful ink path design and high precision assembly technology enable stable, high precision printing with a tiny drop size, while also providing the ink resistance and optimization for low viscosity inks that are demanded in industrial applications. Utilization of MEMS technology will enable future nozzle integration according to customer need, as well as further miniaturization of the printhead itself. KM128SNG-MB will demonstrate its worth in OLED display patterning, OLED lighting thin film layer coating, and new manufacturing technologies to provide high-resolution, high added value displays for smartphones and similar devices.
KM128SNG-MB inkjet printhead
KM128SNG-MB inkjet printhead.
The printed electronics market, including next-generation flexible displays, should reach 2 trillion yen by 2020 (according to Konica Minolta research). It is anticipated this newly designed printhead will contribute greatly to the market. Through industrial inkjet technology, the printhead will contribute in the near future to next-generation printed electronics which enable low power, low resource usage, and high manufacturability.
Major features of the newly designed KM128SNG-MB inkjet printhead
  • Utilizes silicon MEMS technology used in semiconductor processing
  • First printhead for printed electronics applications to achieve a 1 pl drop size
  • High precision printhead structure = 38 mm wide, 128 nozzles in one row
  • Stable, highly accurate operation with precision drive control on a per-nozzle basis
  • High ink resistance and optimization for low viscosity inks for industrial applications
  • Provides highly uniform thin film print thickness (at the 100 nm level)
  • Perfect for displays manufacturing technology, such as for OLED display
  • Proprietary DPN (Drive Per Nozzle) drive board and evaluation equipment available
  • About Konica Minolta IJ Technologies, Inc.
    Konica Minolta IJ Technologies, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Holdings Inc. (TOKYO:4902), is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, and is a leading supplier in industrial inkjet market. We are developing compact and high-performance inkjet printheads, high-value added inks, complete inkjet print units and textile inkjet printers and peripheral equipments. For more information, please visit http://konicaminolta.com
    Source: Konica Minolta IJ Technologies (press release)
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