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Biomedical applications of inkjet technology

The first REEF-Shares-Knowledge event of this year was a fact on March 21st. Of course the division R&D was present again, this time with an inspiring evening on inkjet technology. The speaker of this evening was Professor Frits Dijksman, of the University Twente and consultant for ASML. He is considered a renowned expert in the field of inkjet technology and entertained us this evening with a lecture.

Professor Frits Dijksman

The lecture started with explaining the mathematical and physical background of inkjet technology. Prof. Dijksman explained the theories and principles on which inkjet technology is based or, maybe better formulated, which govern inkjet technology. And as prof. Dijksman states: “It all comes down to tuning, timing and frequencies”. This lecture therefore allowed the participants also to recapture their knowledge on mathematics! During his explanation of the way a inkjet head works, prof. Dijksman also told us which scientists were responsible for the knowledge we have and use to understand the theories. It turns out that most we actually already know for centuries, since scientists did their discoveries in the 18th and 19th century. It is certainly curious that we have so much difficulty with understanding inkjet technology while it is based on theories long known to us!

After the break prof. Dijksman went into the challenges we now encounter with inkjet technology and the most recent advances in this field. He covered among others the way a print head moves (line printing or graphics printing) and the cause of misprints. Misprints might be caused by missing a droplet, which should have been printed but was not. On a sheet of paper printed in household applications or office applications this is not a problem. However when every drop counts, for instance in LED printing, this is a huge problem. The main difficulty is measuring whether a drop was released from the printhead or not. He discussed the advances made in this field and a lively discussion among the experts present was the results.

At the end of the evening prof. Dijksman discussed the possibilities of biomedical applications of inkjet printing technology for instance for micro array applications. After his lecture there was a lively discussion among the participants about the different topics discussed this evening. 

The evening was again a great success and allowed experts from the inkjet technology field to meet each other in a different environment  and discuss their knowledge and expertise. The material discussed by prof. Dijksman was of a very high level with regard to the theory discussed. It was therefore also very educational to everyone.

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