NSTI Nanotech 2009

Acoustic measurement of bubble size and position in an inkjet printhead

A. van der Bos, R. Jeurissen, J. de Jong, M. van den Berg, H. Wijshoff, H. Reinten, M. Versluis, D. Lohse
University of Twente, NL

Keywords: inkjet, stability, acoustics, modeling, experimet, bubble


A bubble can be entrained in the ink channel of a piezo-driven ink jet print head leading to malfunction. Here an acoustic sizing method for the volume and position of the bubble is presented. The influence of the bubble on the channel acoustics is detected by the piezo-actuator operating in a sensing mode. The acoustic response is also modeled in a linearized bubble dynamics model and we demonstrate how the size of the bubble and its position within the channel can be inferred from the inverse problem. The validity of the presented method is supported by time-resolved optical observations of the bubble dynamics visualized in a glass connection channel. The combined optical and acoustical recordings are compared to the model, where we find very good agreement.
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