The most common market segments for thermal printers are bar code, point of sale and card printers. They require the head to print on three types of media: thermal paper, thermal transfer ribbon and dye transfer ribbon. In the emerging market segments there are additional demands made by photographic quality printing, wide format and medical printers. These new markets make specialized print quality demands of the head and utilize new types of media. However, these new print media have served to widen the base of markets served by thermal printing. At the same time that heads are required to print on these new media types with increased performance, the traditional demands of the electronics industry still provide constant downward price pressure.The resistor overcoat must survive chemical attacks from an array of standard and new media, resist abrasion from the same media variety and also are thin enough to transmit heat to the media in an efficient manner. When the circumstances require, the overcoat should also provide a strong defense against electrostatic discharge.So this paper is a presentation on the latest heads designed for printers in five of these specific markets and the overcoats that are applied for the protection of the resistors in those applications. The development of lower cost heads, while simultaneously increasing capability is also described.
Richard P. Collins, "Thin Film Heads for Thermal Printers in 2004" in Proc. IS&T Int'l Conf. on Digital Printing Technologies (NIP19), 2003, pp 379 - 382, https://doi.org/10.2352/ISSN.2169-4451.2003.19.1.art00090_1