Wetting agents, polymeric compounds and pigments are added to increase resolution and quality of the printed film.
Additive manufacturing1Applications of inkjet printingInkjet printing is mainly used in home and office printing from PCs. However, inkjet printing has some industrial applications. Application of inkjet in manufacturing includes additive manufacturing of polymers. The widely used polymers in the market include Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS), Polylactic Acid (PLA), Polycarbonate (PC) fabrics, nylon and Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA). ABS is essential in the injection molding process(Hutchings, 2013).It is the commonly used plastic in 3D print manufacturing. It is cheap and has a high tensile strength. Inkjet printers have also transformed the textile industry by enabling textile printing. They have also been used in the printing of wallpapers that are used to beautify our walls. Inkjet printed solar cells are proving to be of great significance in utilizing the sun's energy and use it in transportation systems, power system and much more. The process has shown great use in the deposition of materials for inorganic and hybrid organic or inorganic solar cells. They can also be used in additive manufacturing of ceramics. The direct ink printing being a versatile complex shape manufacturing method is used to manufacture ceramics of high strength and density. Additive manufacturing method using the knowledge of optics, electronics, and micro fluidics on a one-chip has revolutionized inkjet printing techniques to be used in the printing of optical components like waveguides and lenses(Hoath, 2016).Advantages and disadvantages of inkjet printingInkjet printers are popular in the market today with their primary application being for home use. This is because they are so cheap, unlike the expensive laser printers. They also do not heat, and they are ready for use at any instance, unlike laser printers. However, they are much slower compared to laser printers. The primary challenge that faces the use of inkjet printing in advanced materials is its low resolution. The volume of ejected drop limits the resolution. Moreover, the inks used in them are expensive.Conclusion
Additive manufacturing1Inkjet printing techniques are widely used in Additive manufacturing. The process is important in additive manufacturing of polymers, metals and ceramics, fabrics, wallpapers, passive and active electronic components and many others making inkjet printing important in additive manufacturing.
Additive manufacturing1ReferencesMueller, B., 2012. Additive manufacturing technologies–Rapid prototyping to direct digital manufacturing. Assembly Automation, 32(2). Hutchings, I.M. and Martin, G.D. eds., 2012. Inkjet technology for digital fabrication. John Wiley & Sons.Hoath, S.D. ed., 2016. Fundamentals of inkjet printing: the science of inkjet and droplets. John Wiley & Sons.Martin, G.D., Hoath, S.D. and Hutchings, I.M., 2008. Inkjet printing the physics of manipulating liquid jets and drops. Injournal of physics: Conference Series(Vol.105, No. 1, p. 012001). IOP Publishing.
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