With new, forward-thinking technology ranges such as RIPS, Workforce and PaperLab, Epson clearly do not just pay lip service to the term ‘innovation’. In fact if anyone is likely to 'change the game' in the print industry, it is them. Yet of all their advanced technologies, the biggest strategic investment they have made - in their history - is in PrecisionCore. So what is this, and why are they so excited about it?
PrecisionCore is a flexible, non thermal printhead system that adopts a micro-mechanical approach to fire ink droplets extremely fast without generating – or losing energy through – any superfluous heat. However, the intricate design of the printhead does not stop there.
Cutting edge Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) manufacturing processes allows each printhead to be densely packed with ink nozzles to achieve 600 dpi precision. The nozzle construction is made up of a piezo actuator and ink nozzles mounted on silicon wafers. So what does this all actually mean to the user?
High-resolution Epson print chips are able to produce some of the fastest inkjet printing technologies in the world. Central to the PrecisionCore chip is a technology that uses electric charge to expand piezoelectric elements, pushing ink from the nozzles and out from the printhead towards the surface of a page. Due to the frequency and accuracy of this process each can fire nearly 50,000 times per second, meaning that prints can complete in one extremely quick pass.
Epson achieve a mind-blowing nozzle density by manufacturing chips with nozzle diameters of roughly 20 micrometres, or the width of a very fine human hair. Each delivers small, round, repeatable dots of about 40 microns across. This puts extremely high levels of precision within reach and as such prints can contain incredibly sharp text and fine lines.
PrecisionCore introduces a new system that uses the power of the piezoelectric crystal itself to raise reliability. The piezo element is able to generate a voltage that can detect in milliseconds whether it is firing normally. Printers can self-diagnose the functionality of each element almost instantly and take corrective measures if necessary.
Ink & Media Flexibility
The utilisation of micro-mechanical firing elements avoids the use of thermal based systems. Due to this there are no side-effects of residual heat within the device that can limit the inks that are used. More colourful and durable ink formulations are compatible, or those that contain higher concentrations of colourants and binders than heat-based inkjet systems. It also allows printing on a much wider range of substrates such as film or even plastics.
PrecisionCore is a scalable technology suited for products ranging from industrial systems such as large-scale label presses to desktop printers. Its modularity allows PrecisionCore print chips to be arrayed in both moving serial printhead and fixed linehead configurations.
Long nozzles provide the highest degree of accuracy, as they ensure that the ink droplets go exactly where they are intended to. They also produce sharper and more perfectly circular drops without any distortions or imperfections.
As such, PrecisionCore printheads can be integrated into industrial label presses, large format proofing printers, as well as many other small-scale commercial and industrial printers, delivering predictable and outstanding production efficiencies.
To view some of the devices that feature Epson's PrecisionCore technology, view our Workforce Pro page.