Consistency is key

Would you believe that there was a link between your Christmas kisses under the mistletoe and inkjet printing? Probably not. But there is, and it is at the heart of what vice-president of the Xerox Research Center Webster, Steve Hoover calls the “inkjet paradox”. The paradox is, according to Hoover, that when being jetted from the printhead, the ideal ink is thin and runny so it can be ejected from the tiny nozzles. However, on the substrate it needs to be thicker to ensure it doesn’t bleed and feather, which can result in grey and fuzzy print. But what about that link to your Yuletide canoodling? This comes from the word ‘viscosity’, which describes an ink’s thickness or its resistance to flow. Viscosity has its root in the Latin for mistletoe, ‘viscum’, on account of the berries’ sticky sap.


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