Patent application title: IMAGE PROCESSING METHOD USING SENSED EYE POSITION
Kia Silverbrook (Balmain, AU)
IPC8 Class: AG06T700FI
Class name: Image analysis applications target tracking or detecting
Publication date: 2015-04-30
Patent application number: 20150117711
A method is described for processing an image previously captured by a
camera and stored in a processor readable memory. The method involves
detecting a face within the stored image and detecting a position of the
first face within the stored image. The method additionally involves
performing region-specific image processing on the stored image based on
the detected position of the first face. A computer readable storage
medium for storing instructions for processing an image previously
captured by a camera and a hand-held camera are also described.
1. A method for processing an image previously captured by a camera and
stored in a processor readable memory, the method comprising the steps
of: detecting a first face within the stored image; detecting a position
of the first face within the stored image; and performing region-specific
image processing on the stored image based on the detected position of
the first face.
2. The method of claim 1, wherein detecting a face within the captured image comprises applying a face detection algorithm to the stored image.
3. The method of claim 1, wherein the image processing includes at least one of applying a graphical object to the stored image based on a location of the face, applying a morph to the stored image based on the location of the face, applying focusing effects to the stored image based on a location of the face, and applying a rendering to the stored image.
4. The method of claim 1, further comprising: detecting one or more additional faces within the stored image; and detecting a position of each of the one or more additional faces within the stored image.
5. The method of claim 4, further comprising selecting a selected face from one of the first face and the one or more additional faces.
6. The method of claim 5, further comprising performing additional image processing on the stored image based on a position of the selected face within the stored image.
7. The method of claim 5, the method further comprising: sensing a position of an eye of a user of the camera; storing sensed eye position information corresponding to the position of the eye of the user of the camera; and determining, from the stored sensed eye position information, a corresponding estimated eye view position within the stored image.
8. The method of claim 7, wherein selecting a selected face comprises using the estimated eye view position to select the selected face.
9. The method of claim 8, wherein using the estimated eye view position to select the selected face comprises selecting the face closest to the estimated eye view position.
10. A non-transitory processor readable storage medium configured with processor executable instructions for: detecting a first face within the stored image; detecting a position of the first face within the stored image; and performing region-specific image processing on the stored image based on the detected position of the first face.
11. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 10, wherein the instructions for detecting a face within the captured image comprise instructions for applying a face detection algorithm to the stored image.
12. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 10, wherein the instructions for performing image processing include at least one of instructions for applying a graphical object to the stored image based on a location of the face, instructions for applying a morph to the stored image based on the location of the face, instructions for applying focusing effects to the stored image based on a location of the face, and instructions for applying a rendering to the stored image.
13. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 10, further comprising processor executable instructions for: detecting one or more additional faces within the stored image; and detecting a position of each of the one or more additional faces within the stored image.
14. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 13, further comprising processor executable instructions for selecting a selected face from one of the first face and the one or more additional faces.
15. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 14, further comprising processor executable instructions for performing additional image processing on the stored image based on a position of the selected face within the stored image.
16. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 14, further comprising processor executable instructions for: sensing a position of an eye of a user of the camera; storing sensed eye position information corresponding to the position of the eye of the user of the camera; and determining, from the stored sensed eye position information, a corresponding estimated eye view position within the stored image.
17. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 16, wherein the processor executable instructions for selecting a selected face comprise instructions for using the estimated eye view position to select the selected face.
18. The non-transitory processor readable storage medium of claim 17, wherein the processor executable instructions for using the estimated eye view position to select the selected face comprise selecting the face closest to the estimated eye view position.
19. A hand held camera device comprising: a memory; and a processor; wherein the memory is configured to store an image captured by the hand held camera device; and wherein the processor is configured to: detect a first face within the stored image; detect a position of the first face within the stored image; and perform region-specific image processing on the stored image based on the detected position of the first face.
20. The hand held camera device of claim 19, further comprising: an eye position sensor configured to sense a position of an eye of a user of the camera and generate eye position information corresponding to the position of the eye of the user of the camera; wherein the memory is further configured to store the sensed eye position information.
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS
 This application is a Continuation application of U.S. Ser. No. 12/941,714 filed Nov. 8, 2010, which is a Continuation of U.S. Ser. No. 11/778,561 filed Jul. 16, 2007, now issued U.S. Pat. No. 7,847,836, which is a Continuation application of U.S. Ser. No. 10/636,226 filed Aug. 8, 2003, now issued U.S. Pat. No. 7,256,824, which is a Continuation application of U.S. Ser. No. 09/112,746 filed Jul. 10, 1998, now issued U.S. Pat. No. 6,690,419, all of which are herein incorporated by reference.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention relates to an image processing method and apparatus and, in particular, discloses a process for Utilising Eye Detection Methods in a Digital Image Camera.
 The present invention relates to the field of digital image processing and in particular, the field of processing of images taken via a digital camera.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 Recently, digital cameras have become increasingly popular. These cameras normally operate by means of imaging a desired image utilising a charge coupled device (CCD) array and storing the imaged scene on an electronic storage medium for later down loading onto a computer system for subsequent manipulation and printing out. Normally, when utilising a computer system to print out an image, sophisticated software may available to manipulate the image in accordance with requirements.
 Unfortunately such systems require significant post processing of a captured image and normally present the image in an orientation to which it was taken, relying on the post processing process to perform any necessary or required modifications of the captured image. Further, much of the environmental information available when the picture was taken is lost.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 According to one embodiment of the present disclosure, a method for processing an image previously captured by a camera and stored in a memory of the camera comprises the steps of sensing the position of an eye in the captured image; generating eye position information; and processing said captured image using the eye position information. The step of processing involves detecting a face within the capture image, and applying a morph to the detected face to modify the captured image. The step of processing further involves a step of applying a graphical object at a location within the image and relative to the detected face.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
 Notwithstanding any other forms which may fall within the scope of the present invention, preferred forms of the invention will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings which:
 FIG. 1 illustrates the method of operation of the preferred embodiment; and
 FIG. 2 illustrates one form of image processing in accordance with the preferred embodiment.
DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED AND OTHER EMBODIMENTS
 The preferred embodiment is preferably implemented through suitable programming of a hand held camera device such as that described in the concurrently filed application entitled "A Digital Image Printing Camera with Image Processing Capability", the content of which is hereby specifically incorporated by cross reference and the details of which, and other related applications are set out in the tables below.
 The aforementioned patent specification discloses a camera system, hereinafter known as an "Artcam" type camera, wherein sensed images can be directly printed out by an Artcam portable camera unit. Further, the aforementioned specification discloses means and methods for performing various manipulations on images captured by the camera sensing device leading to the production of various effects in any output image. The manipulations are disclosed to be highly flexible in nature and can be implemented through the insertion into the Artcam of cards having encoded thereon various instructions for the manipulation of images, the cards hereinafter being known as Artcards. The Artcam further has significant onboard processing power by an Artcam Central Processor unit (ACP) which is interconnected to a memory device for the storage of important data and images.
 In the preferred embodiment, the Artcam device is modified so as to include an eye position sensor which senses a current eye position. The sensed eye position information is utilised to process the digital image taken by the camera so as to produce modifications, transformations etc. in accordance with the sensed eye position.
 The construction of eye position sensors is known to those skilled in the art and is utilised within a number of manufacture's cameras. In particular, within those of Canon Inc. Eye position sensors may rely on the projection of an infra red beam from the viewfinder into the viewer's eye and a reflection detected and utilized to determine a likely eye position.
 In the preferred embodiment, it is assumed that the eye position sensor is interconnected to the ACP unit of the Artcam device as discussed in the aforementioned Australian Provisional Patent Application which is converted to a digital form and stored in the Artcam memory store for later use.
 Turning now to FIG. 1, the eye position information 10 and the image 11 are stored in the memory of the Artcam and are then processed 12 by the ACP to output a processed image 13 for printing out as a photo via a print head. The form of image processing 12 can be highly variable provided it is dependant on the eye position information 10. For example, in a first form of image processing, a face detection algorithm is applied to the image 11 so as to detect the position of faces within an image and to apply various graphical objects, for example, speech bubbles in a particular offset relationship to the face. An example of such process is illustrated in FIG. 3 wherein, a first image 15 is shown of three persons. After application of the face detection algorithm, three faces 16, 17 and 18 are detected. The eye position information is then utilised to select that face which is closest to an estimated eye view within the frame. In a first example, the speech bubble is place relative to the head 16. In a second example 20, the speech bubble is placed relative to the head 17 and in a third example 21, the speech bubble is placed relative to the head 18. Hence, an art card can be provided containing an encoded form of speech bubble application algorithm and the image processed so as to place the speech bubble text above a pre-determined face within the image.
 It will be readily apparent that the eye position information could be utilised to process the image 11 in a multitude of different ways. This can include applying regions specific morphs to faces and objects, applying focusing effects in a regional or specific manner. Further, the image processing involved can include applying artistic renderings of an image and this can include applying an artistic paint brushing technique. The artistic brushing methods can be applied in a region specific manner in accordance with the eye position information 10. The final processed image 13 can be printed out as required. Further images can be then taken, each time detecting and utilising a different eye position to produce a different output image.
 It would be appreciated by a person skilled in the art that numerous variations and/or modifications may be made to the present invention as shown in the specific embodiment without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention as broadly described. The present embodiment is, therefore, to be considered in all respects to be illustrative and not restrictive.
 The present invention is further best utilized in the Artcam device, the details of which are set out in the following paragraphs although it is not restricted thereto.
Ink Jet Technologies
 The embodiments of the invention use an ink jet printer type device. Of course many different devices could be used. However presently popular ink jet printing technologies are unlikely to be suitable.
 The most significant problem with thermal inkjet is power consumption. This is approximately 100 times that required for high speed, and stems from the energy-inefficient means of drop ejection. This involves the rapid boiling of water to produce a vapor bubble which expels the ink. Water has a very high heat capacity, and must be superheated in thermal inkjet applications. This leads to an efficiency of around 0.02%, from electricity input to drop momentum (and increased surface area) out.
 The most significant problem with piezoelectric inkjet is size and cost. Piezoelectric crystals have a very small deflection at reasonable drive voltages, and therefore require a large area for each nozzle. Also, each piezoelectric actuator must be connected to its drive circuit on a separate substrate. This is not a significant problem at the current limit of around 300 nozzles per print head, but is a major impediment to the fabrication of pagewide print heads with 19,200 nozzles.
 Ideally, the inkjet technologies used meet the stringent requirements of in-camera digital color printing and other high quality, high speed, low cost printing applications. To meet the requirements of digital photography, new inkjet technologies have been created. The target features include:
 low power (less than 10 Watts)
 high resolution capability (1,600 dpi or more)
 photographic quality output
 low manufacturing cost
 small size (pagewidth times minimum cross section)
 high speed (<2 seconds per page).
 All of these features can be met or exceeded by the inkjet systems described below with differing levels of difficulty. 45 different inkjet technologies have been developed by the Assignee to give a wide range of choices for high volume manufacture. These technologies form part of separate applications assigned to the present Assignee as set out in the table below.
 The inkjet designs shown here are suitable for a wide range of digital printing systems, from battery powered one-time use digital cameras, through to desktop and network printers, and through to commercial printing systems
 For ease of manufacture using standard process equipment, the print head is designed to be a monolithic 0.5 micron CMOS chip with MEMS post processing. For color photographic applications, the print head is 100 mm long, with a width which depends upon the inkjet type. The smallest print head designed is IJ38, which is 0.35 mm wide, giving a chip area of 35 square mm. The print heads each contain 19,200 nozzles plus data and control circuitry.
 Ink is supplied to the back of the print head by injection molded plastic ink channels. The molding requires 50 micron features, which can be created using a lithographically micromachined insert in a standard injection molding tool. Ink flows through holes etched through the wafer to the nozzle chambers fabricated on the front surface of the wafer. The print head is connected to the camera circuitry by tape automated bonding.
 The following table is a guide to cross-referenced patent applications filed concurrently herewith and discussed hereinafter with the reference being utilized in subsequent tables when referring to a particular case:
TABLE-US-00001 Docket Patent No No. Title IJ01US 6,227,652 Radiant Plunger Ink Jet Printer IJ02US 6,213,588 Electrostatic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ03US 6,213,589 Planar Thermoelastic Bend Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ04US 6,231,163 Stacked Electrostatic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ05US 6,247,795 Reverse Spring Lever Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ06US 6,394,581 Paddle Type Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ07US 6,244,691 Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ08US 6,257,704 Planar Swing Grill Electromagnetic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ09US 6,416,168 Pump Action Refill Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ10US 6,220,694 Pulsed Magnetic Field Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ11US 6,257,705 Two Plate Reverse Firing Electromagnetic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ12US 6,247,794 Linear Stepper Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ13US 6,234,610 Gear Driven Shutter Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ14US 6,247,793 Tapered Magnetic Pole Electromagnetic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ15US 6,264,306 Linear Spring Electromagnetic Grill Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ16US 6,241,342 Lorenz Diaphragm Electromagnetic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ17US 6,247,792 PTFE Surface Shooting Shuttered Oscillating Pressure Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ18US 6,264,307 Buckle Grill Oscillating Pressure Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ19US 6,254,220 Shutter Based Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ20US 6,234,611 Curling Calyx Thermoelastic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ21US 6,302,528 Thermal Actuated Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ22US 6,283,582 Iris Motion Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ23US 6,239,821 Direct Firing Thermal Bend Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ24US 6,338,547 Conductive PTFE Bend Actuator Vented Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ25US 6,247,796 Magnetostrictive Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ26US 6,557,977 Shape Memory Alloy Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ27US 6,390,603 Buckle Plate Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ28US 6,362,843 Thermal Elastic Rotary Impeller Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ29US 6,293,653 Thermoelastic Bend Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ30US 6,312,107 Thermoelastic Bend Actuator Using PTFE Corrugated Heater Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ31US 6,227,653 Bend Actuator Direct Ink Supply Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ32US 6,234,609 High Young's Modulus Thermoelastic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ33US 6,238,040 Thermally Actuated Slotted Chamber Wall Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ34US 6,188,415 Ink Jet Printer having a Thermal Actuator Comprising an External Coil Spring IJ35US 6,227,654 Trough Container Ink Jet Printing Mechanism with Paddle IJ36US 6,209,989 Dual Chamber Single Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ37US 6,247,791 Dual Nozzle Single Horizontal Fulcrum Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ38US 6,336,710 Dual Nozzle Single Horizontal Actuator Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ39US 6,217,153 Single Bend Actuator Cupped Paddle Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ40US 6,416,167 Thermally Actuated Ink Jet Printing Mechanism having a Series of Thermal Actuator Units IJ41US 6,243,113 Thermally Actuated Ink Jet Printing Mechanism including a Tapered Heater Element IJ42US 6,283,581 Radial Back-Curling Thermoelastic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ43US 6,247,790 Inverted Radial Back-Curling Thermoelastic Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ44US 6,260,953 Surface Bend Actuator Vented Ink Supply Ink Jet Printing Mechanism IJ45US 6,267,469 A Solenoid Actuated Magnetic Plate Ink Jet Printing Mechanism
Tables of Drop-on-Demand Inkjets
 Eleven important characteristics of the fundamental operation of individual inkjet nozzles have been identified. These characteristics are largely orthogonal, and so can be elucidated as an eleven dimensional matrix. Most of the eleven axes of this matrix include entries developed by the present assignee.
 The following tables form the axes of an eleven dimensional table of inkjet types.
 Actuator mechanism (18 types)
 Basic operation mode (7 types)
 Auxiliary mechanism (8 types)
 Actuator amplification or modification method (17 types)
 Actuator motion (19 types)
 Nozzle refill method (4 types)
 Method of restricting back-flow through inlet (10 types)
 Nozzle clearing method (9 types)
 Nozzle plate construction (9 types)
 Drop ejection direction (5 types)
 Ink type (7 types)
 The complete eleven dimensional table represented by these axes contains 36.9 billion possible configurations of inkjet nozzle. While not all of the possible combinations result in a viable inkjet technology, many million configurations are viable. It is clearly impractical to elucidate all of the possible configurations. Instead, certain inkjet types have been investigated in detail. These are designated IJ01 to IJ95 above.
 Other inkjet configurations can readily be derived from these 45 examples by substituting alternative configurations along one or more of the 11 axes. Most of the IJ01 to IJ45 examples can be made into inkjet print heads with characteristics superior to any currently available inkjet technology.
 Where there are prior art examples known to the inventor, one or more of these examples are listed in the examples column of the tables below. The IJ01 to IJ45 series are also listed in the examples column. In some cases, a printer may be listed more than once in a table, where it shares characteristics with more than one entry.
 Suitable applications include: Home printers, Office network printers, Short run digital printers, Commercial print systems, Fabric printers, Pocket printers, Internet WWW printers, Video printers, Medical imaging, Wide format printers, Notebook PC printers, Fax machines, Industrial printing systems, Photocopiers, Photographic minilabs etc.
 The information associated with the aforementioned 11 dimensional matrix are set out in the following tables.
TABLE-US-00002 ACTUATOR MECHANISM (APPLIED ONLY TO SELECTED INK DROPS) Actuator Mechanism Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Thermal An electrothermal heater Large force generated High power Canon Bubblejet bubble heats the ink to above Simple construction Ink carrier limited to water 1979 Endo et al boiling point, transferring No moving parts Low efficiency GB patent significant heat to the Fast operation High temperatures required 2,007,162 aqueous ink. A bubble Small chip area High mechanical stress Xerox heater-in- nucleates and quickly required for actuator Unusual materials required pit 1990 Hawkins forms, expelling the ink. Large drive transistors et al U.S. Pat. No. The efficiency of the Cavitation causes actuator 4,899,181 process is low, with failure Hewlett-Packard typically less than 0.05% Kogation reduces bubble TIJ 1982 Vaught of the electrical energy formation et al U.S. Pat. No. being transformed into Large print heads are 4,490,728 kinetic energy of the drop. difficult to fabricate Piezoelectric A piezoelectric crystal Low power consumption Very large area required for Kyser et al U.S. Pat. No. such as lead lanthanum Many ink types can be actuator 3,946,398 zirconate (PZT) is used Difficult to integrate with Zoltan U.S. Pat. No. electrically activated, and Fast operation electronics 3,683,212 either expands, shears, or High efficiency High voltage drive 1973 Stemme U.S. Pat. No. bends to apply pressure to transistors required 3,747,120 the ink, ejecting drops. Full pagewidth print heads Epson Stylus impractical due to actuator Tektronix size IJ04 Requires electrical poling in high field strengths during manufacture Electrostrictive An electric field is used Low power consumption Low maximum strain (approx. Seiko Epson, to activate Many ink types can be 0.01%) Usui et all JP electrostriction in relaxor used Large area required for 253401/96 materials such as lead Low thermal expansion actuator due to low strain IJ04 lanthanum zirconate Electric field Response speed is marginal (~10 μs) titanate (PLZT) or lead strength required High voltage drive magnesium niobate (PMN). (approx. 3.5 V/μm) transistors required can be generated Full pagewidth print heads without difficulty impractical due to actuator Does not require size electrical poling Ferroelectric An electric field is used Low power consumption Difficult to integrate with IJ04 to induce a phase Many ink types can be electronics transition between the used Unusual materials such as antiferroelectric (AFE) and Fast operation (<1 μs) PLZSnT are required ferroelectric (FE) phase. Relatively high Actuators require a large Perovskite materials such longitudinal strain area as tin modified lead High efficiency lanthanum zirconate Electric field titanate (PLZSnT) exhibit strength of around 3 V/μm large strains of up to 1% can be readily associated with the AFE to provided FE phase transition. Electrostatic Conductive plates are Low power consumption Difficult to operate IJ02, IJ04 plates separated by a compressible Many ink types can be electrostatic devices in an or fluid dielectric used aqueous environment (usually air). Upon Fast operation The electrostatic actuator application of a voltage, will normally need to be the plates attract each separated from the ink other and displace ink, Very large area required to causing drop ejection. The achieve high forces conductive plates may be in High voltage drive a comb or honeycomb transistors may be required structure, or stacked to Full pagewidth print heads increase the surface area are not competitive due to and therefore the force. actuator size Electrostatic A strong electric field is Low current High voltage required 1989 Saito et pull on ink applied to the ink, consumption May be damaged by sparks due al, U.S. Pat. No. whereupon electrostatic Low temperature to air breakdown 4,799,068 attraction accelerates the Required field strength 1989 Miura et ink towards the print increases as the drop size al, U.S. Pat. No. medium. decreases 4,810,954 High voltage drive Tone-jet transistors required Electrostatic field attracts dust Permanent An electromagnet directly Low power consumption Complex fabrication IJ07, IJ10 magnet attracts a permanent Many ink types can be Permanent magnetic material electromagnetic magnet, displacing ink and used such as Neodymium Iron Boron causing drop ejection. Rare Fast operation (NdFeB) required. earth magnets with a field High efficiency High local currents required strength around 1 Tesla can Easy extension from Copper metalization should be be used. Examples are: single nozzles to used for long Samarium Cobalt (SaCo) and pagewidth print heads electromigration lifetime and magnetic materials in the low resistivity neodymium iron boron family Pigmented inks are usually (NdFeB, NdDyFeBNb, NdDyFeB, infeasible etc) Operating temperature limited to the Curie temperature (around 540 K) Soft magnetic A solenoid induced a Low power consumption Complex fabrication IJ01, IJ05, core magnetic field in a soft Many ink types can be Materials not usually present IJ08, IJ10 electromagnetic magnetic core or yoke used in a CMOS fab such as NiFe, IJ12, IJ14, fabricated from a ferrous Fast operation CoNiFe, or CoFe are required IJ15, IJ17 material such as High efficiency High local currents required electroplated iron alloys Easy extension from Copper metalization should be such as CoNiFe , CoFe, single nozzles to used for long or NiFe alloys. Typically, pagewidth print heads electromigration lifetime and the soft magnetic material low resistivity is in two parts, which are Electroplating is required normally held apart by a High saturation flux density spring. When the solenoid is required (2.0-2.1 T is is actuated, the two parts achievable with CoNiFe ) attract, displacing the ink. Magnetic The Lorenz force acting on Low power consumption Force acts as a twisting IJ06, IJ11, Lorenz force a current carrying wire in Many ink types can be motion IJ13, IJ16 a magnetic field is used Typically, only a quarter of utilized. Fast operation the solenoid length provides This allows the magnetic High efficiency force in a useful direction field to be supplied Easy extension from High local currents required externally to the print single nozzles to Copper metalization should be head, for example with rare pagewidth print heads used for long earth permanent magnets. electromigration lifetime and Only the current carrying low resistivity wire need be fabricated on Pigmented inks are usually the print-head, simplifying infeasible materials requirements. Magnetostriction The actuator uses the giant Many ink types can be Force acts as a twisting Fischenbeck, U.S. Pat. No. magnetostrictive effect of used motion 4,032,929 materials such as Terfenol- Fast operation Unusual materials such as IJ25 D (an alloy of terbium, Easy extension from Terfenol-D are required dysprosium and iron single nozzles to High local currents required developed at the Naval pagewidth print heads Copper metalization should be Ordnance Laboratory, hence High force is used for long Ter-Fe-NOL). For best available electromigration lifetime and efficiency, the actuator low resistivity should be pre-stressed to Pre-stressing may be required approx. 8 MPa. Surface Ink under positive pressure Low power consumption Requires supplementary force Silverbrook, EP tension is held in a nozzle by Simple construction to effect drop separation 0771 658 A2 and reduction surface tension. The No unusual materials Requires special ink related patent surface tension of the ink required in surfactants applications is reduced below the bubble fabrication Speed may be limited by threshold, causing the ink High efficiency surfactant properties to egress from the nozzle. Easy extension from single nozzles to pagewidth print heads Viscosity The ink viscosity is Simple construction Requires supplementary force Silverbrook, EP reduction locally reduced to select No unusual materials to effect drop separation 0771 658 A2 and which drops are to be required in Requires special ink related patent ejected. A viscosity fabrication viscosity properties applications reduction can be achieved Easy extension from High speed is difficult to electrothermally with most single nozzles to achieve inks, but special inks can pagewidth print heads Requires oscillating ink be engineered for a 100:1 pressure viscosity reduction. A high temperature difference (typically 80 degrees) is required Acoustic An acoustic wave is Can operate without a Complex drive circuitry 1993 Hadimioglu generated and focussed upon nozzle plate Complex fabrication et al, EUP the drop ejection region. Low efficiency 550,192 Poor control of drop position 1993 Elrod et Poor control of drop volume al, EUP 572,220 Thermoelastic An actuator which relies Low power consumption Efficient aqueous operation IJ03, IJ09, bend actuator upon differential thermal Many ink types can be requires a thermal insulator IJ17, IJ18 expansion upon Joule used on the hot side IJ19, IJ20, heating is used. Simple planar Corrosion prevention can be IJ21, IJ22 fabrication difficult IJ23, IJ24, Small chip area Pigmented inks may be IJ27, IJ28 required for each infeasible, as pigment IJ29, IJ30, actuator particles may jam the bend IJ31, IJ32 Fast operation actuator IJ33, IJ34, High efficiency IJ35, IJ36 CMOS compatible IJ37, IJ38, voltages and currents IJ39, IJ40 Standard MEMS IJ41 processes can be used Easy extension from single nozzles to pagewidth print heads High CTE A material with a very high High force can be Requires special material IJ09, IJ17, thermoelastic coefficient of thermal generated (e.g. PTFE) IJ18, IJ20 actuator expansion (CTE) such as PTFE is a candidate Requires a PTFE deposition IJ21, IJ22, polytetrafluoroethylene for low dielectric process, which is not yet IJ23, IJ24 (PTFE) is used. As high CTE constant insulation standard in ULSI fabs IJ27, IJ28, materials are usually non- in ULSI PTFE deposition cannot be IJ29, IJ30 conductive, a heater Very low power followed with high IJ31, IJ42, fabricated from a consumption temperature (above 350° C.) IJ43, IJ44 conductive material is Many ink types can be processing incorporated. A 50 μm long used Pigmented inks may be PTFE bend actuator with Simple planar infeasible, as pigment polysilicon heater and 15 mW fabrication particles may jam the bend power input can provide Small chip area actuator 180 μN force and 10 μm required for each deflection. Actuator actuator motions include: Fast operation 1) Bend High efficiency 2) Push CMOS compatible 3) Buckle voltages and currents 4) Rotate Easy extension from single nozzles to pagewidth print heads Conductive A polymer with a high High force can be Requires special materials IJ24 polymer coefficient of thermal generated development (High CTE thermoelastic expansion (such as PTFE) is Very low power conductive polymer) actuator doped with conducting consumption Requires a PTFE deposition substances to increase its Many ink types can be process, which is not yet conductivity to about 3 used standard in ULSI fabs orders of magnitude below Simple planar PTFE deposition cannot be that of copper. The fabrication followed with high
conducting polymer expands Small chip area temperature (above 350° C.) when resistively heated. required for each processing Examples of conducting actuator Evaporation and CVD dopants include: Fast operation deposition techniques cannot 1) Carbon nanotubes High efficiency be used 2) Metal fibers CMOS compatible Pigmented inks may be 3) Conductive polymers such voltages and currents infeasible, as pigment as doped polythiophene Easy extension from particles may jam the bend 4) Carbon granules single nozzles to actuator pagewidth print heads Shape memory A shape memory alloy such High force is Fatigue limits maximum number IJ26 alloy as TiNi (also known as available (stresses of cycles Nitinol - Nickel Titanium of hundreds of MPa) Low strain (1%) is required alloy developed at the Large strain is to extend fatigue resistance Naval Ordnance Laboratory) available (more than Cycle rate limited by heat is thermally switched 3%) removal between its weak High corrosion Requires unusual materials martensitic state and its resistance (TiNi) high stiffness austenic Simple construction The latent heat of state. The shape of the Easy extension from transformation must be actuator in its martensitic single nozzles to provided state is deformed relative pagewidth print heads High current operation to the austenic shape. The Low voltage operation Requires pre-stressing to shape change causes distort the martensitic state ejection of a drop. Linear Linear magnetic actuators Linear Magnetic Requires unusual IJ12 Magnetic include the Linear actuators can be semiconductor materials such Actuator Induction Actuator (LIA), constructed with high as soft magnetic alloys (e.g. Linear Permanent Magnet thrust, long travel, CoNiFe ) Synchronous Actuator and high efficiency Some varieties also require (LPMSA), Linear Reluctance using planar permanent magnetic materials Synchronous Actuator semiconductor such as Neodymium iron boron (LRSA), Linear Switched fabrication (NdFeB) Reluctance Actuator (LSRA), techniques Requires complex multi-phase and the Linear Stepper Long actuator travel drive circuitry Actuator (LSA). is available High current operation Medium force is available Low voltage operation
TABLE-US-00003 BASIC OPERATION MODE Operational mode Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Actuator This is the simplest mode Simple operation Drop repetition rate is Thermal inkjet directly of operation: the actuator No external fields usually limited to less than Piezoelectric pushes ink directly supplies required 10 KHz. However, this is not inkjet sufficient kinetic energy Satellite drops can fundamental to the method, IJ01, IJ02, to expel the drop. The drop be avoided if drop but is related to the refill IJ03, IJ04 must have a sufficient velocity is less than method normally used IJ05, IJ06, velocity to overcome the 4 m/s All of the drop kinetic IJ07, IJ09 surface tension. Can be efficient, energy must be provided by IJ11, IJ12, depending upon the the actuator IJ14, IJ16 actuator used Satellite drops usually form IJ20, IJ22, if drop velocity is greater IJ23, IJ24 than 4.5 m/s IJ25, IJ26, IJ27, IJ28 IJ29, IJ30, IJ31, IJ32 IJ33, IJ34, IJ35, IJ36 IJ37, IJ38, IJ39, IJ40 IJ41, IJ42, IJ43, IJ44 Proximity The drops to be printed are Very simple print Requires close proximity Silverbrook, EP selected by some manner head fabrication can between the print head and 0771 658 A2 and (e.g. thermally induced be used the print media or transfer related patent surface tension reduction The drop selection roller applications of pressurized ink). means does not need May require two print heads Selected drops are to provide the energy printing alternate rows of separated from the ink in required to separate the image the nozzle by contact with the drop from the Monolithic color print heads the print medium or a nozzle are difficult transfer roller. Electrostatic The drops to be printed are Very simple print Requires very high Silverbrook, EP pull on ink selected by some manner head fabrication can electrostatic field 0771 658 A2 and (e.g. thermally induced be used Electrostatic field for small related patent surface tension reduction The drop selection nozzle sizes is above air applications of pressurized ink). means does not need breakdown Tone-Jet Selected drops are to provide the energy Electrostatic field may separated from the ink in required to separate attract dust the nozzle by a strong the drop from the electric field. nozzle Magnetic pull The drops to be printed are Very simple print Requires magnetic ink Silverbrook, EP on ink selected by some manner head fabrication can Ink colors other than black 0771 658 A2 and (e.g. thermally induced be used are difficult related patent surface tension reduction The drop selection Requires very high magnetic applications of pressurized ink). means does not need fields Selected drops are to provide the energy separated from the ink in required to separate the nozzle by a strong the drop from the magnetic field acting on nozzle the magnetic ink. Shutter The actuator moves a High speed (>50 KHz) Moving parts are required IJ13, IJ17, IJ21 shutter to block ink flow operation can be Requires ink pressure to the nozzle. The ink achieved due to modulator pressure is pulsed at a reduced refill time Friction and wear must be multiple of the drop Drop timing can be considered ejection frequency. very accurate Stiction is possible The actuator energy can be very low Shuttered The actuator moves a Actuators with small Moving parts are required IJ08, IJ15, grill shutter to block ink flow travel can be used Requires ink pressure IJ18, IJ19 through a grill to the Actuators with small modulator nozzle. The shutter force can be used Friction and wear must be movement need only be equal High speed (>50 KHz) considered to the width of the grill operation can be Stiction is possible holes. achieved Pulsed A pulsed magnetic field Extremely low energy Requires an external pulsed IJ10 magnetic pull attracts an `ink pusher` at operation is possible magnetic field on ink pusher the drop ejection No heat dissipation Requires special materials frequency. An actuator problems for both the actuator and the controls a catch, which ink pusher prevents the ink pusher Complex construction from moving when a drop is not to be ejected.
TABLE-US-00004 AUXILIARY MECHANISM (APPLIED TO ALL NOZZLES) Auxiliary Mechanism Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples None The actuator directly fires Simplicity of Drop ejection energy must be Most inkjets, the ink drop, and there is construction supplied by individual nozzle including no external field or other Simplicity of actuator piezoelectric mechanism required. operation and thermal Small physical size bubble. IJ01-IJ07, IJ09, IJ11 IJ12, IJ14, IJ20, IJ22 IJ23-IJ45 Oscillating The ink pressure Oscillating ink Requires external ink Silverbrook, EP ink pressure oscillates, providing much pressure can provide pressure oscillator 0771 658 A2 and (including of the drop ejection a refill pulse, Ink pressure phase and related patent acoustic energy. The actuator allowing higher amplitude must be carefully applications stimulation) selects which drops are to operating speed controlled IJ08, IJ13, be fired by selectively The actuators may Acoustic reflections in the IJ15, IJ17 blocking or enabling operate with much ink chamber must be designed IJ18, IJ19, IJ21 nozzles. The ink pressure lower energy for oscillation may be achieved Acoustic lenses can by vibrating the print be used to focus the head, or preferably by an sound on the nozzles actuator in the ink supply. Media The print head is placed in Low power Precision assembly required Silverbrook, EP proximity close proximity to the High accuracy Paper fibers may cause 0771 658 A2 and print medium. Selected Simple print head problems related patent drops protrude from the construction Cannot print on rough applications print head further than substrates unselected drops, and contact the print medium. The drop soaks into the medium fast enough to cause drop separation. Transfer Drops are printed to a High accuracy Bulky Silverbrook, EP roller transfer roller instead of Wide range of print Expensive 0771 658 A2 and straight to the print substrates can be Complex construction related patent medium. A transfer roller used applications can also be used for Ink can be dried on Tektronix hot proximity drop separation. the transfer roller melt piezoelectric inkjet Any of the IJ series Electrostatic An electric field is used Low power Field strength required for Silverbrook, EP to accelerate selected Simple print head separation of small drops is 0771 658 A2 and drops towards the print construction near or above air breakdown related patent medium. applications Tone-Jet Direct A magnetic field is used to Low power Requires magnetic ink Silverbrook, EP magnetic accelerate selected drops Simple print head Requires strong magnetic 0771 658 A2 and field of magnetic ink towards the construction field related patent print medium. applications Cross The print head is placed in Does not require Requires external magnet IJ06, IJ16 magnetic a constant magnetic field. magnetic materials to Current densities may be field The Lorenz force in a be integrated in the high, resulting in current carrying wire is print head electromigration problems used to move the actuator. manufacturing process Pulsed A pulsed magnetic field is Very low power Complex print head IJ10 magnetic used to cyclically attract operation is possible construction field a paddle, which pushes on Small print head size Magnetic materials required the ink. A small actuator in print head moves a catch, which selectively prevents the paddle from moving.
TABLE-US-00005 ACTUATOR AMPLIFICATION OR MODIFICATION METHOD Actuator amplification Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples None No actuator mechanical Operational Many actuator mechanisms have Thermal Bubble amplification is used. The simplicity insufficient travel, or Inkjet actuator directly drives insufficient force, to IJ01, IJ02, the drop ejection process. efficiently drive the drop IJ06, IJ07 ejection process IJ16, IJ25, IJ26 Differential An actuator material Provides greater High stresses are involved Piezoelectric expansion expands more on one side travel in a reduced Care must be taken that the IJ03, IJ09, bend actuator than on the other. The print head area materials do not delaminate IJ17-IJ24 expansion may be thermal, The bend actuator Residual bend resulting from IJ27, IJ29-IJ39, piezoelectric, converts a high force high temperature or high IJ42, magnetostrictive, or other low travel actuator stress during formation IJ43, IJ44 mechanism. mechanism to high travel, lower force mechanism. Transient A trilayer bend actuator Very good temperature High stresses are involved IJ40, IJ41 bend actuator where the two outside stability Care must be taken that the layers are identical. This High speed, as a new materials do not delaminate cancels bend due to ambient drop can be fired temperature and residual before heat stress. The actuator only dissipates responds to transient Cancels residual heating of one side or the stress of formation other. Actuator A series of thin actuators Increased travel Increased fabrication Some stack are stacked. This can be Reduced drive voltage complexity piezoelectric appropriate where actuators Increased possibility of ink jets require high electric field short circuits due to IJ04 strength, such as pinholes electrostatic and piezoelectric actuators. Multiple Multiple smaller actuators Increases the force Actuator forces may not add IJ12, IJ13, actuators are used simultaneously to available from an linearly, reducing efficiency IJ18, IJ20 move the ink. Each actuator actuator IJ22, IJ28, need provide only a portion Multiple actuators IJ42, IJ43 of the force required. can be positioned to control ink flow accurately Linear Spring A linear spring is used to Matches low travel Requires print head area for IJ15 transform a motion with actuator with higher the spring small travel and high force travel requirements into a longer travel, lower Non-contact method of force motion. motion transformation Reverse The actuator loads a Better coupling to Fabrication complexity IJ05, IJ11 spring spring. When the actuator the ink High stress in the spring is turned off, the spring releases. This can reverse the force/distance curve of the actuator to make it compatible with the force/time requirements of the drop ejection. Coiled A bend actuator is coiled Increases travel Generally restricted to IJ17, IJ21, actuator to provide greater travel Reduces chip area planar implementations due to IJ34, IJ35 in a reduced chip area. Planar extreme fabrication implementations are difficulty in other relatively easy to orientations. fabricate. Flexure bend A bend actuator has a small Simple means of Care must be taken not to IJ10, IJ19, IJ33 actuator region near the fixture increasing travel of exceed the elastic limit in point, which flexes much a bend actuator the flexure area more readily than the Stress distribution is very remainder of the actuator. uneven The actuator flexing is Difficult to accurately model effectively converted from with finite element analysis an even coiling to an angular bend, resulting in greater travel of the actuator tip. Gears Gears can be used to Low force, low travel Moving parts are required IJ13 increase travel at the actuators can be used several actuator cycles are expense of duration. Can be fabricated required Circular gears, rack and using standard More complex drive pinion, ratchets, and other surface MEMS electronics gearing methods can be processes Complex construction used. Friction, friction, and wear are possible Catch The actuator controls a Very low actuator Complex construction IJ10 small catch. The catch energy Requires external force either enables or disables Very small actuator Unsuitable for pigmented inks movement of an ink pusher size that is controlled in a bulk manner. Buckle plate A buckle plate can be used Very fast movement Must stay within elastic S. Hirata et al, to change a slow actuator achievable limits of the materials for "An Ink-jet Head into a fast motion. It can long device life . . . ", Proc. IEEE also convert a high force, High stresses involved MEMS, February 1996, low travel actuator into a Generally high power pp 418-423. high travel, medium force requirement IJ18, IJ27 motion. Tapered A tapered magnetic pole can Linearizes the Complex construction IJ14 magnetic pole increase travel at the magnetic expense of force. force/distance curve Lever A lever and fulcrum is used Matches low travel High stress around the IJ32, IJ36, IJ37 to transform a motion with actuator with higher fulcrum small travel and high force travel requirements into a motion with longer Fulcrum area has no travel and lower force. The linear movement, and lever can also reverse the can be used for a direction of travel. fluid seal Rotary The actuator is connected High mechanical Complex construction IJ28 impeller to a rotary impeller. A advantage Unsuitable for pigmented inks small angular deflection of The ratio of force to the actuator results in a travel of the rotation of the impeller actuator can be vanes, which push the ink matched to the nozzle against stationary vanes requirements by and out of the nozzle. varying the number of impeller vanes Acoustic lens A refractive or diffractive No moving parts Large area required 1993 Hadimioglu (e.g. zone plate) acoustic Only relevant for acoustic et al, EUP lens is used to concentrate ink jets 550,192 sound waves. 1993 Elrod et al, EUP 572,220 Sharp A sharp point is used to Simple construction Difficult to fabricate using Tone-jet conductive concentrate an standard VLSI processes for a point electrostatic field. surface ejecting ink-jet Only relevant for electrostatic ink jets
TABLE-US-00006 ACTUATOR MOTION Actuator motion Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Volume The volume of the actuator Simple construction High energy is typically Hewlett-Packard expansion changes, pushing the ink in in the case of required to achieve volume Thermal Inkjet all directions. thermal ink jet expansion. This leads to Canon Bubblejet thermal stress, cavitation, and kogation in thermal ink jet implementations Linear, The actuator moves in a Efficient coupling to High fabrication complexity IJ01, IJ02, normal to direction normal to the ink drops ejected may be required to achieve IJ04, IJ07 chip surface print head surface. The normal to the surface perpendicular motion IJ11, IJ14 nozzle is typically in the line of movement. Linear, The actuator moves parallel Suitable for planar Fabrication complexity IJ12, IJ13, parallel to to the print head surface. fabrication Friction IJ15, IJ33, chip surface Drop ejection may still be Stiction IJ34, IJ35, IJ36 normal to the surface. Membrane push An actuator with a high The effective area of Fabrication complexity 1982 Howkins U.S. Pat. No. force but small area is the actuator becomes Actuator size 4,459,601 used to push a stiff the membrane area Difficulty of integration in membrane that is in contact a VLSI process with the ink. Rotary The actuator causes the Rotary levers may be Device complexity IJ05, IJ08, rotation of some element, used to increase May have friction at a pivot IJ13, IJ28 such a grill or impeller travel point Small chip area requirements Bend The actuator bends when A very small change Requires the actuator to be 1970 Kyser et al energized. This may be due in dimensions can be made from at least two U.S. Pat. No. 3,946,398 to differential thermal converted to a large distinct layers, or to have a 1973 Stemme U.S. Pat. No. expansion, piezoelectric motion. thermal difference across the 3,747,120 expansion, actuator IJ03, IJ09, magnetostriction, or other IJ10, IJ19 form of relative IJ23, IJ24, dimensional change. IJ25, IJ29 IJ30, IJ31, IJ33, IJ34, IJ35 Swivel The actuator swivels around Allows operation Inefficient coupling to the IJ06 a central pivot. This where the net linear ink motion motion is suitable where force on the paddle there are opposite forces is zero applied to opposite sides Small chip area of the paddle, e.g. Lorenz requirements force. Straighten The actuator is normally Can be used with Requires careful balance of IJ26, IJ32 bent, and straightens when shape memory alloys stresses to ensure that the energized. where the austenic quiescent bend is accurate phase is planar Double bend The actuator bends in one One actuator can be Difficult to make the drops IJ36, IJ37, IJ38 direction when one element used to power two ejected by both bend is energized, and bends the nozzles. directions identical. other way when another Reduced chip size. A small efficiency loss element is energized. Not sensitive to compared to equivalent single ambient temperature bend actuators. Shear Energizing the actuator Can increase the Not readily applicable to 1985 Fishbeck causes a shear motion in effective travel of other actuator mechanisms U.S. Pat. No. 4,584,590 the actuator material. piezoelectric actuators Radial The actuator squeezes an Relatively easy to High force required 1970 Zoltan U.S. Pat. No. constriction ink reservoir, forcing ink fabricate single Inefficient 3,683,212 from a constricted nozzle. nozzles from glass Difficult to integrate with tubing as macroscopic VLSI processes structures Coil/uncoil A coiled actuator uncoils Easy to fabricate as Difficult to fabricate for IJ17, IJ21, or coils more tightly. The a planar VLSI process non-planar devices IJ34, IJ35 motion of the free end of Small area required, Poor out-of-plane stiffness the actuator ejects the therefore low cost ink. Bow The actuator bows (or Can increase the Maximum travel is constrained IJ16, IJ18, IJ27 buckles) in the middle when speed of travel High force required energized. Mechanically rigid Push-Pull Two actuators control a The structure is Not readily suitable for IJ18 shutter. One actuator pulls pinned at both ends, inkjets which directly push the shutter, and the other so has a high out-of- the ink pushes it. plane rigidity Curl inwards A set of actuators curl Good fluid flow to Design complexity IJ20, IJ42 inwards to reduce the the region behind the volume of ink that they actuator increases enclose. efficiency Curl outwards A set of actuators curl Relatively simple Relatively large chip area IJ43 outwards, pressurizing ink construction in a chamber surrounding the actuators, and expelling ink from a nozzle in the chamber. Iris Multiple vanes enclose a High efficiency High fabrication complexity IJ22 volume of ink. These Small chip area Not suitable for pigmented simultaneously rotate, inks reducing the volume between the vanes. Acoustic The actuator vibrates at a The actuator can be Large area required for 1993 Hadimioglu vibration high frequency. physically distant efficient operation at useful et al, EUP from the ink frequencies 550,192 Acoustic coupling and 1993 Elrod et crosstalk al, EUP 572,220 Complex drive circuitry Poor control of drop volume and position None In various ink jet designs No moving parts Various other tradeoffs are Silverbrook, EP the actuator does not move. required to eliminate moving 0771 658 A2 and parts related patent applications Tone-jet
TABLE-US-00007 NOZZLE REFILL METHOD Nozzle refill method Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Surface After the actuator is Fabrication Low speed Thermal inkjet tension energized, it typically simplicity Surface tension force Piezoelectric returns rapidly to its Operational relatively small compared to inkjet normal position. This rapid simplicity actuator force IJ01-IJ07, IJ10-IJ14 return sucks in air through Long refill time usually IJ16, IJ20, the nozzle opening. The ink dominates the total IJ22-IJ45 surface tension at the repetition rate nozzle then exerts a small force restoring the meniscus to a minimum area. Shuttered Ink to the nozzle chamber High speed Requires common ink pressure IJ08, IJ13, oscillating is provided at a pressure Low actuator energy, oscillator IJ15, IJ17 ink pressure that oscillates at twice as the actuator need May not be suitable for IJ18, IJ19, IJ21 the drop ejection only open or close pigmented inks frequency. When a drop is the shutter, instead to be ejected, the shutter of ejecting the ink is opened for 3 half drop cycles: drop ejection, actuator return, and refill. Refill After the main actuator has High speed, as the Requires two independent IJ09 actuator ejected a drop a second nozzle is actively actuators per nozzle (refill) actuator is refilled energized. The refill actuator pushes ink into the nozzle chamber. The refill actuator returns slowly, to prevent its return from emptying the chamber again. Positive ink The ink is held a slight High refill rate, Surface spill must be Silverbrook, EP pressure positive pressure. After therefore a high drop prevented 0771 658 A2 and the ink drop is ejected, repetition rate is Highly hydrophobic print head related patent the nozzle chamber fills possible surfaces are required applications quickly as surface tension Alternative for: and ink pressure both IJ01-IJ07, IJ10-IJ14 operate to refill the IJ16, IJ20, nozzle. IJ22-IJ45
TABLE-US-00008 METHOD OF RESTRICTING BACK-FLOW THROUGH INLET Inlet back-flow restriction method Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Long inlet The ink inlet channel Design simplicity Restricts refill Thermal inkjet channel to the nozzle chamber Operational rate Piezoelectric inkjet is made long and simplicity May result in a IJ42, IJ43 relatively narrow, Reduces relatively large chip relying on viscous crosstalk area drag to reduce inlet Only partially back-flow. effective Positive ink The ink is under a Drop selection Requires a Silverbrook, EP pressure positive pressure, so and separation method (such as a 0771 658 A2 and that in the quiescent forces can be nozzle rim or related patent state some of the ink reduced effective applications drop already protrudes Fast refill time hydrophobizing, or Possible from the nozzle. both) to prevent operation of the This reduces the flooding of the following: pressure in the nozzle ejection surface of IJ01-IJ07, IJ09-IJ12 chamber which is the print head. IJ14, IJ16, IJ20, IJ22, required to eject a IJ23-IJ34, IJ36-IJ41 certain volume of ink. IJ44 The reduction in chamber pressure results in a reduction in ink pushed out through the inlet. Baffle One or more baffles The refill rate is Design HP Thermal Ink are placed in the inlet not as restricted as complexity Jet ink flow. When the the long inlet May increase Tektronix actuator is energized, method. fabrication piezoelectric ink the rapid ink Reduces complexity (e.g. jet movement creates crosstalk Tektronix hot melt eddies which restrict Piezoelectric print the flow through the heads). inlet. The slower refill process is unrestricted, and does not result in eddies. Flexible flap In this method recently Significantly Not applicable to Canon restricts disclosed by Canon, reduces back-flow most inkjet inlet the expanding actuator for edge-shooter configurations (bubble) pushes on a thermal ink jet Increased flexible flap that devices fabrication restricts the inlet. complexity Inelastic deformation of polymer flap results in creep over extended use Inlet filter A filter is located Additional Restricts refill IJ04, IJ12, IJ24, IJ27 between the ink inlet advantage of ink rate IJ29, IJ30 and the nozzle filtration May result in chamber. The filter Ink filter may be complex has a multitude of fabricated with no construction small holes or slots, additional process restricting ink flow. steps The filter also removes particles which may block the nozzle. Small inlet The ink inlet channel Design simplicity Restricts refill IJ02, IJ37, IJ44 compared to the nozzle chamber rate to nozzle has a substantially May result in a smaller cross section relatively large chip than that of the nozzle, area resulting in easier ink Only partially egress out of the effective nozzle than out of the inlet. Inlet shutter A secondary actuator Increases speed Requires separate IJ09 controls the position of of the ink-jet print refill actuator and a shutter, closing off head operation drive circuit the ink inlet when the main actuator is energized. The inlet is The method avoids the Back-flow Requires careful IJ01, IJ03, 1J05, IJ06 located problem of inlet back- problem is design to minimize IJ07, IJ10, IJ11, IJ14 behind the flow by arranging the eliminated the negative IJ16, IJ22, IJ23, IJ25 ink-pushing ink-pushing surface of pressure behind the IJ28, IJ31, IJ32, IJ33 surface the actuator between paddle IJ34, IJ35, IJ36, IJ39 the inlet and the IJ40, IJ41 nozzle. Part of the The actuator and a Significant Small increase in IJ07, IJ20, IJ26, IJ38 actuator wall of the ink reductions in fabrication moves to chamber are arranged back-flow can be complexity shut off the so that the motion of achieved inlet the actuator closes off Compact designs the inlet. possible Nozzle In some configurations Ink back-flow None related to Silverbrook, EP actuator of ink jet, there is no problem is ink back-flow on 0771 658 A2 and does not expansion or eliminated actuation related patent result in ink movement of an applications back-flow actuator which may Valve-jet cause ink back-flow Tone-jet through the inlet. IJ08, IJ13, 1J15, IJ17 IJ18, IJ19, IJ21
TABLE-US-00009 NOZZLE CLEARING METHOD Nozzle Clearing method Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Normal All of the nozzles are No added May not be Most ink jet nozzle firing fired periodically, complexity on the sufficient to systems before the ink has a print head displace dried ink IJ01-IJ07, IJ09-IJ12 chance to dry. When IJ14, IJ16, IJ20, IJ22 not in use the nozzles IJ23-IJ34, IJ36-IJ45 are sealed (capped) against air. The nozzle firing is usually performed during a special clearing cycle, after first moving the print head to a cleaning station. Extra In systems which heat Can be highly Requires higher Silverbrook, EP power to the ink, but do not boil effective if the drive voltage for 0771 658 A2 and ink heater it under normal heater is adjacent to clearing related patent situations, nozzle the nozzle May require applications clearing can be larger drive achieved by over- transistors powering the heater and boiling ink at the nozzle. Rapid The actuator is fired in Does not require Effectiveness May be used with: succession rapid succession. In extra drive circuits depends IJ01-IJ07, IJ09-IJ11 of actuator some configurations, on the print head substantially upon IJ14, IJ16, IJ20, IJ22 pulses this may cause heat Can be readily the configuration of IJ23-IJ25, IJ27-IJ34 build-up at the nozzle controlled and the inkjet nozzle IJ36-IJ45 which boils the ink, initiated by digital clearing the nozzle. In logic other situations, it may cause sufficient vibrations to dislodge clogged nozzles. Extra Where an actuator is A simple Not suitable May be used with: power to not normally driven to solution where where there is a IJ03, IJ09, IJ16, IJ20 ink pushing the limit of its motion, applicable hard limit to IJ23, IJ24, IJ25, IJ27 actuator nozzle clearing may be actuator movement IJ29, IJ30, IJ31, IJ32 assisted by providing IJ39, IJ40, IJ41, IJ42 an enhanced drive IJ43, IJ44, IJ45 signal to the actuator. Acoustic An ultrasonic wave is A high nozzle High IJ08, IJ13, IJ15, IJ17 resonance applied to the ink clearing capability implementation cost IJ18, IJ19, IJ21 chamber. This wave is can be achieved if system does not of an appropriate May be already include an amplitude and implemented at very acoustic actuator frequency to cause low cost in systems sufficient force at the which already nozzle to clear include acoustic blockages. This is actuators easiest to achieve if the ultrasonic wave is at a resonant frequency of the ink cavity. Nozzle A microfabricated Can clear Accurate Silverbrook, EP clearing plate is pushed against severely clogged mechanical 0771 658 A2 and plate the nozzles. The plate nozzles alignment is related patent has a post for every required applications nozzle. The array of Moving parts are posts. required There is risk of damage to the nozzles Accurate fabrication is required Ink The pressure of the ink May be effective Requires May be used pressure is temporarily where other pressure pump or with all IJ series ink pulse increased so that ink methods cannot be other pressure jets streams from all of the used actuator nozzles. This may be Expensive used in conjunction Wasteful of ink with actuator energizing. Print head A flexible `blade` is Effective for Difficult to use if Many ink jet wiper wiped across the print planar print head print head surface is systems head surface. The surfaces non-planar or very blade is usually Low cost fragile fabricated from a Requires flexible polymer, e.g. mechanical parts rubber or synthetic Blade can wear elastomer. out in high volume print systems Separate A separate heater is Can be effective Fabrication Can be used with ink boiling provided at the nozzle where other nozzle complexity many IJ series ink heater although the normal clearing methods jets drop ejection cannot be used mechanism does not Can be require it. The heaters implemented at no do not require additional cost in individual drive some inkjet circuits, as many configurations nozzles can be cleared simultaneously, and no imaging is required.
TABLE-US-00010 NOZZLE PLATE CONSTRUCTION Nozzle plate construction Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Electro- A nozzle plate is Fabrication High Hewlett Packard formed separately fabricated simplicity temperatures and Thermal Inkjet nickel from electroformed pressures are nickel, and bonded to required to bond the print head chip. nozzle plate Minimum thickness constraints Differential thermal expansion Laser Individual nozzle No masks Each hole must Canon Bubblejet ablated or holes are ablated by an required be individually 1988 Sercel et drilled intense UV laser in a Can be quite fast formed al., SPIE, Vol. 998 polymer nozzle plate, which is Some control Special Excimer Beam typically a polymer over nozzle profile equipment required Applications, pp. such as polyimide or is possible Slow where there 76-83 polysulphone Equipment are many thousands 1993 Watanabe required is relatively of nozzles per print et al., U.S. Pat. No. low cost head 5,208,604 May produce thin burrs at exit holes Silicon A separate nozzle High accuracy is Two part K. Bean, IEEE micro- plate is attainable construction Transactions on machined micromachined from High cost Electron Devices, single crystal silicon, Requires Vol. ED-25, No. 10, and bonded to the precision alignment 1978, pp 1185-1195 print head wafer. Nozzles may be Xerox 1990 clogged by adhesive Hawkins et al., U.S. Pat. No. 4,899,181 Glass Fine glass capillaries No expensive Very small 1970 Zoltan capillaries are drawn from glass equipment required nozzle sizes are U.S. Pat. No. 3,683,212 tubing. This method Simple to make difficult to form has been used for single nozzles Not suited for making individual mass production nozzles, but is difficult to use for bulk manufacturing of print heads with thousands of nozzles. Monolithic, The nozzle plate is High accuracy Requires Silverbrook, EP surface deposited as a layer (<1 μm) sacrificial layer 0771 658 A2 and micro- using standard VLSI Monolithic under the nozzle related patent machined deposition techniques. Low cost plate to form the applications using VLSI Nozzles are etched in Existing nozzle chamber IJ01, IJ02, IJ04, IJ11 litho- the nozzle plate using processes can be Surface may be IJ12, IJ17, IJ18, IJ20 graphic VLSI lithography and used fragile to the touch IJ22, IJ24, IJ27, IJ28 processes etching. IJ29, IJ30, IJ31, IJ32 IJ33, IJ34, IJ36, IJ37 IJ38, IJ39, IJ40, IJ41 IJ42, IJ43, IJ44 Monolithic, The nozzle plate is a High accuracy Requires long IJ03, IJ05, IJ06, IJ07 etched buried etch stop in the (<1 μm) etch times IJ08, IJ09, IJ10, IJ13 through wafer. Nozzle Monolithic Requires a IJ14, IJ15, IJ16, IJ19 substrate chambers are etched in Low cost support wafer IJ21, IJ23, IJ25, IJ26 the front of the wafer, No differential and the wafer is expansion thinned from the back side. Nozzles are then etched in the etch stop layer. No nozzle Various methods have No nozzles to Difficult to Ricoh 1995 plate been tried to eliminate become clogged control drop Sekiya et al the nozzles entirely, to position accurately U.S. Pat. No. 5,412,413 prevent nozzle Crosstalk 1993 Hadimioglu clogging. These problems et al EUP 550,192 include thermal bubble 1993 Elrod et al mechanisms and EUP 572,220 acoustic lens mechanisms Trough Each drop ejector has Reduced Drop firing IJ35 a trough through manufacturing direction is sensitive which a paddle moves. complexity to wicking. There is no nozzle Monolithic plate. Nozzle slit The elimination of No nozzles to Difficult to 1989 Saito et al instead of nozzle holes and become clogged control drop U.S. Pat. No. 4,799,068 individual replacement by a slit position accurately nozzles encompassing many Crosstalk actuator positions problems reduces nozzle clogging, but increases crosstalk due to ink surface waves
TABLE-US-00011 DROP EJECTION DIRECTION Ejection direction Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Edge Ink flow is along the Simple Nozzles limited Canon Bubblejet (`edge surface of the chip, construction to edge 1979 Endo et al GB shooter`) and ink drops are No silicon High resolution patent 2,007,162 ejected from the chip etching required is difficult Xerox heater-in- edge. Good heat Fast color pit 1990 Hawkins et al sinking via substrate printing requires U.S. Pat. No. 4,899,181 Mechanically one print head per Tone-jet strong color Ease of chip handing Surface Ink flow is along the No bulk silicon Maximum ink Hewlett-Packard (`roof surface of the chip, etching required flow is severely TIJ 1982 Vaught et al shooter`) and ink drops are Silicon can make restricted U.S. Pat. No. 4,490,728 ejected from the chip an effective heat IJ02, IJ11, IJ12, IJ20 surface, normal to the sink IJ22 plane of the chip. Mechanical strength Through Ink flow is through the High ink flow Requires bulk Silverbrook, EP chip, chip, and ink drops are Suitable for silicon etching 0771 658 A2 and forward ejected from the front pagewidth print related patent (`up surface of the chip. High nozzle applications shooter`) packing density IJ04, IJ17, IJ18, IJ24 therefore low IJ27-IJ45 manufacturing cost Through Ink flow is through the High ink flow Requires wafer IJ01, IJ03, IJ05, IJ06 chip, chip, and ink drops are Suitable for thinning IJ07, IJ08, IJ09, IJ10 reverse ejected from the rear pagewidth print Requires special IJ13, IJ14, IJ15, IJ16 (`down surface of the chip. High nozzle handling during IJ19, IJ21, IJ23, IJ25 shooter`) packing density manufacture IJ26 therefore low manufacturing cost Through Ink flow is through the Suitable for Pagewidth print Epson Stylus actuator actuator, which is not piezoelectric print heads require Tektronix hot fabricated as part of heads several thousand melt piezoelectric the same substrate as connections to drive ink jets the drive transistors. circuits Cannot be manufactured in standard CMOS fabs Complex assembly required
TABLE-US-00012 INK TYPE Ink type Description Advantages Disadvantages Examples Aqueous, Water based ink which Environmentally Slow drying Most existing inkjets dye typically contains: friendly Corrosive All IJ series ink jets water, dye, surfactant, No odor Bleeds on paper Silverbrook, EP humectant, and May 0771 658 A2 and biocide. strikethrough related patent Modern ink dyes have Cockles paper applications high water-fastness, light fastness Aqueous, Water based ink which Environmentally Slow drying IJ02, IJ04, IJ21, IJ26 pigment typically contains: friendly Corrosive IJ27, IJ30 water, pigment, No odor Pigment may Silverbrook, EP surfactant, humectant, Reduced bleed clog nozzles 0771 658 A2 and and biocide. Reduced wicking Pigment may related patent Pigments have an Reduced clog actuator applications advantage in reduced strikethrough mechanisms Piezoelectric ink-jets bleed, wicking and Cockles paper Thermal ink jets strikethrough. (with significant restrictions) Methyl MEK is a highly Very fast drying Odorous All IJ series ink Ethyl volatile solvent used Prints on various Flammable jets Ketone for industrial printing substrates such as (MEK) on difficult surfaces metals and plastics such as aluminum cans. Alcohol Alcohol based inks Fast drying Slight odor All IJ series ink (ethanol, can be used where the Operates at sub- Flammable jets 2-butanol, printer must operate at freezing and others) temperatures below temperatures the freezing point of Reduced paper water. An example of cockle this is in-camera Low cost consumer photographic printing. Phase The ink is solid at No drying time- High viscosity Tektronix hot change room temperature, and ink instantly freezes Printed ink melt piezoelectric (hot melt) is melted in the print on the print medium typically has a ink jets head before jetting. Almost any print `waxy` feel 1989 Nowak Hot melt inks are medium can be used Printed pages U.S. Pat. No. usually wax based, No paper cockle may `block` 4,820,346 with a melting point occurs Ink temperature All IJ series ink around 80° C. After No wicking may be above the jets jetting the ink freezes occurs curie point of almost instantly upon No bleed occurs permanent magnets contacting the print No strikethrough Ink heaters medium or a transfer occurs consume power roller. Long warm-up time Oil Oil based inks are High solubility High viscosity: All IJ series ink extensively used in medium for some this is a significant jets offset printing. They dyes limitation for use in have advantages in Does not cockle ink jets, which improved paper usually require a characteristics on Does not wick low viscosity. Some paper (especially no through paper short chain and wicking or cockle). multi-branched oils Oil soluble dies and have a sufficiently pigments are required. low viscosity. Slow drying Micro- A microemulsion is a Stops ink bleed Viscosity higher All IJ series ink emulsion stable, self forming High dye than water jets emulsion of oil, water, solubility Cost is slightly and surfactant. The Water, oil, and higher than water characteristic drop size amphiphilic soluble based ink is less than 100 nm, dies can be used High surfactant and is determined by Can stabilize concentration the preferred curvature pigment required (around of the surfactant. suspensions 5%)
Ink Jet Printing
 A large number of new forms of ink jet printers have been developed to facilitate alternative ink jet technologies for the image processing and data distribution system. Various combinations of ink jet devices can be included in printer devices incorporated as part of the present invention. Australian Provisional Patent Applications relating to these ink jets which are specifically incorporated by cross reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00013 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PO8066 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,227,652 and Apparatus (IJ01) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8072 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,213,588 and Apparatus (IJ02) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8040 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,213,589 and Apparatus (IJ03) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8071 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,231,163 and Apparatus (IJ04) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8047 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,795 and Apparatus (IJ05) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8035 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,394,581 and Apparatus (IJ06) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8044 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,244,691 and Apparatus (IJ07) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8063 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,257,704 and Apparatus (IJ08) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8057 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,416,168 and Apparatus (IJ09) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8056 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,220,694 and Apparatus (IJ10) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8069 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,257,705 and Apparatus (IJ11) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8049 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,794 and Apparatus (IJ12) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8036 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,234,610 and Apparatus (IJ13) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8048 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,793 and Apparatus (IJ14) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8070 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,264,306 and Apparatus (IJ15) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8067 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,241,342 and Apparatus (IJ16) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8001 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,792 and Apparatus (IJ17) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8038 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,264,307 and Apparatus (IJ18) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8033 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,254,220 and Apparatus (IJ19) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8002 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,234,611 and Apparatus (IJ20) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8068 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,302,528 and Apparatus (IJ21) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8062 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,283,582 and Apparatus (IJ22) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8034 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,239,821 and Apparatus (IJ23) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8039 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,338,547 and Apparatus (IJ24) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8041 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,796 and Apparatus (IJ25) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8004 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 09/113,122 and Apparatus (IJ26) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8037 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,390,603 and Apparatus (IJ27) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8043 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,362,843 and Apparatus (IJ28) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8042 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,293,653 and Apparatus (IJ29) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8064 15 Jul. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,312,107 and Apparatus (IJ30) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9389 23 Sep. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,227,653 and Apparatus (IJ31) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9391 23 Sep. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,234,609 and Apparatus (IJ32) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0888 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,238,040 and Apparatus (IJ33) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0891 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,188,415 and Apparatus (IJ34) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0890 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,227,654 and Apparatus (IJ35) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0873 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,209,989 and Apparatus (IJ36) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0993 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,247,791 and Apparatus (IJ37) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0890 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,336,710 and Apparatus (IJ38) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP1398 19 Jan. 1998 An Image Creation Method 6,217,153 and Apparatus (IJ39) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP2592 25 Mar. 1998 An Image Creation Method 6,416,167 and Apparatus (IJ40) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP2593 25 Mar. 1998 Image Creation Method 6,243,113 and Apparatus (IJ41) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP3991 9 Jun. 1998 Image Creation Method 6,283,581 and Apparatus (IJ42) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP3987 9 Jun. 1998 Image Creation Method 6,247,790 and Apparatus (IJ43) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP3985 9 Jun. 1998 Image Creation Method 6,260,953 and Apparatus (IJ44) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP3983 9 Jun. 1998 Image Creation Method 6,267,469 and Apparatus (IJ45) (Jul. 10, 1998)
Ink Jet Manufacturing
 Further, the present application may utilize advanced semiconductor fabrication techniques in the construction of large arrays of ink jet printers. Suitable manufacturing techniques are described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications incorporated here by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00014 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PO7935 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,224,780 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM01) PO7936 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,235,212 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM02) PO7937 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,280,643 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM03) PO8061 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,284,147 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM04) PO8054 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,214,244 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM05) PO8065 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,071,750 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM06) PO8055 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,267,905 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM07) PO8053 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,251,298 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM08) PO8078 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,258,285 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM09) PO7933 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,225,138 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM10) PO7950 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,241,904 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM11) PO7949 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,299,786 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM12) PO8060 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 09/113,124 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM13) PO8059 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,231,773 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM14) PO8073 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,190,931 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM15) PO8076 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,248,249 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM16) PO8075 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,290,862 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM17) PO8079 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,241,906 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM18) PO8050 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 09/113,116 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM19) PO8052 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,241,905 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM20) PO7948 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,451,216 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM21) PO7951 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,231,772 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM22) PO8074 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,274,056 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM23) PO7941 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,290,861 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM24) PO8077 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,248,248 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM25) PO8058 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,306,671 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM26) PO8051 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,331,258 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM27) PO8045 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,110,754 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM28) PO7952 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,294,101 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM29) PO8046 15 Jul. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,416,679 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM30) PO8503 11 Aug. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,264,849 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM30a) PO9390 23 Sep. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,254,793 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM31) PO9392 23 Sep. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,235,211 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM32) PP0889 12 Dec. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,235,211 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM35) PP0887 12 Dec. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,264,850 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM36) PP0882 12 Dec. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,258,284 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM37) PP0874 12 Dec. 1997 A Method of Manufacture 6,258,284 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM38) PP1396 19 Jan. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,228,668 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM39) PP2591 25 Mar. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,180,427 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM41) PP3989 9 Jun. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,171,875 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM40) PP3990 9 Jun. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,267,904 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM42) PP3986 9 Jun. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,245,247 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM43) PP3984 9 Jun. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,245,247 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM44) PP3982 9 Jun. 1998 A Method of Manufacture 6,231,148 of an Image (Jul. 10, 1998) Creation Apparatus (IJM45)
 Further, the present application may utilize an ink delivery system to the ink jet head. Delivery systems relating to the supply of ink to a series of ink jet nozzles are described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications, the disclosure of which are hereby incorporated by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00015 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PO8003 15 Jul. 1997 Supply Method 6,350,023 and Apparatus (F1) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8005 15 Jul. 1997 Supply Method 6,318,849 and Apparatus (F2) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9404 23 Sep. 1997 A Device and 09/113,101 Method (F3) (Jul. 10, 1998)
 MEMS Technology
 Further, the present application may utilize advanced semiconductor microelectromechanical techniques in the construction of large arrays of ink jet printers. Suitable microelectromechanical techniques are described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications incorporated here by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00016 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PO7943 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS01) PO8006 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS02) 6,087,638 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8007 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS03) 09/113,093 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8008 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS04) 6,340,222 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8010 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS05) 6,041,600 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8011 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS06) 6,299,300 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7947 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS07) 6,067,797 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7945 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS08) 09/113,081 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7944 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS09) 6,286,935 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7946 15 Jul. 1997 A device (MEMS10) 6,044,646 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9393 23 Sep. 1997 A Device and Method 09/113,065 (MEMS11) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0875 12 Dec. 1997 A Device (MEMS12) 09/113,078 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0894 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method 09/113,075 (MEMS13) (Jul. 10, 1998)
 Further, the present application may include the utilization of a disposable camera system such as those described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications incorporated here by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00017 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PP0895 12 Dec. 1997 An Image Creation Method 6,231,148 and Apparatus (IR01) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0870 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR02) 09/113,106 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0869 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR04) 6,293,658 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0887 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 09/113,104 and Apparatus (IR05) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0885 12 Dec. 1997 An Image Production 6,238,033 System (IR06) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0884 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,312,070 and Apparatus (IR10) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0886 12 Dec. 1997 Image Creation Method 6,238,111 and Apparatus (IR12) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0871 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR13) 09/113,086 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0876 12 Dec. 1997 An Image Processing Method 09/113,094 and Apparatus (IR14) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0877 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR16) 6,378,970 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0878 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR17) 6,196,739 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0879 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR18) 09/112,774 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0883 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR19) 6,270,182 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0880 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR20) 6,152,619 (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0881 12 Dec. 1997 A Device and Method (IR21) 09/113,092 (Jul. 10, 1998)
 Further, the present application may include the utilization of a data distribution system such as that described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications incorporated here by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00018 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PP2370 16 Mar. 1998 Data Processing 09/112,781 Method and (Jul. 10, 1998) Apparatus (Dot01) PP2371 16 Mar. 1998 Data Processing 09/113,052 Method and (Jul. 10, 1998) Apparatus (Dot02)
 Further, the present application may include the utilization of camera and data processing techniques such as an Artcam type device as described in the following Australian provisional patent specifications incorporated here by cross-reference. The serial numbers of respective corresponding US patent applications are also provided for the sake of convenience.
TABLE-US-00019 Austra- US Patent/ lian Patent Provi- Application sional and Filing Number Filing Date Title Date PO7991 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/113,060 and Apparatus (ART01) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7988 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,476,863 and Apparatus (ART02) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7993 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/113,073 and Apparatus (ART03) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9395 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,322,181 and Apparatus (ART04) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8017 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,747 and Apparatus (ART06) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8014 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART07) 6,227,648 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8025 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,750 and Apparatus (ART08) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8032 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,746 and Apparatus (ART09) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7999 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,743 and Apparatus (ART10) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7998 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,742 and Apparatus (ART11) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8031 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,741 and Apparatus (ART12) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8030 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART13) 6,196,541 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7997 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART15) 6,195,150 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7979 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART16) 6,362,868 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8015 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART17) 09/112,738 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7978 15 Jul. 1997 Media Device (ART18) 09/113,067 (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7982 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,431,669 and Apparatus (ART19) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7989 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,362,869 and Apparatus (ART20) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8019 15 Jul. 1997 Media Processing Method 6,472,052 and Apparatus (ART21) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7980 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,356,715 and Apparatus (ART22) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8018 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,777 and Apparatus (ART24) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7938 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/113,224 and Apparatus (ART25) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8016 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,366,693 and Apparatus (ART26) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8024 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,329,990 and Apparatus (ART27) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7940 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,072 and Apparatus (ART28) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7939 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/112,785 and Apparatus (ART29) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8501 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,137,500 and Apparatus (ART30) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8500 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,796 and Apparatus (ART31) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7987 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,071 and Apparatus (ART32) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8022 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,398,328 and Apparatus (ART33) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8497 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/113,090 and Apparatus (ART34) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8020 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,431,704 and Apparatus (ART38) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8023 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,222 and Apparatus (ART39) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8504 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,786 and Apparatus (ART42) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8000 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,415,054 and Apparatus (ART43) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7977 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/112,782 and Apparatus (ART44) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7934 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,056 and Apparatus (ART45) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7990 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,059 and Apparatus (ART46) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8499 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,486,886 and Apparatus (ART47) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8502 11 Aug. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,381,361 and Apparatus (ART48) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7981 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,317,192 and Apparatus (ART50) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7986 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,057 and Apparatus (ART51) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO7983 15 Jul. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,054 and Apparatus (ART52) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8026 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,752 and Apparatus (ART53) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8027 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,759 and Apparatus (ART54) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO8028 15 Jul. 1997 Image Processing Method 09/112,757 and Apparatus (ART56) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9394 23 Sep. 1997 Image Processing Method 6,357,135 and Apparatus (ART57) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9396 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/113,107 and Apparatus (ART58) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9397 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,271,931 and Apparatus (ART59) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9398 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,353,772 and Apparatus (ART60) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9399 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,106,147 and Apparatus (ART61) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9400 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/112,790 and Apparatus (ART62) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9401 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,304,291 and Apparatus (ART63) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9402 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 09/112,788 and Apparatus (ART64) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9403 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,305,770 and Apparatus (ART65) (Jul. 10, 1998) PO9405 23 Sep. 1997 Data Processing Method 6,289,262 and Apparatus (ART66) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP0959 16 Dec. 1997 A Data Processing Method 6,315,200 and Apparatus (ART68) (Jul. 10, 1998) PP1397 19 Jan. 1998 A Media Device (ART69) 6,217,165 (Jul. 10, 1998)
Patent applications by Kia Silverbrook, Balmain AU
Patent applications in class Target tracking or detecting
Patent applications in all subclasses Target tracking or detecting