KYOCERA Introduces New KC-91 Protective Overcoat for Thermal Printheads Used …

KYOTO, Japan, Feb 06, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) —
Kyocera Corporation

/quotes/zigman/194992/quotes/nls/kyo KYO

(tokyo:6971) today announced the KC-91, a
new protective overcoat that can be applied to Kyocera’s thin-film
thermal printheads commonly used in dye-sublimation printing
applications such as the self-service digital photo printing machines
increasingly found in public locations. Kyocera thermal printheads (up
to a maximum A4-size) featuring the KC-91 protective overcoat will be
sold starting Tuesday, February 7, 2012.


The newly-developed KC-91 protective overcoat demonstrates the following

A reduction in frictional resistance of approximately 50% over
Kyocera’s conventional overcoat*1 which is made possible
through Kyocera’s proprietary assessment technology as well as
improvements in the overcoat materials and film-formation conditions.
The result is a reduction in the occurrence of ‘wrinkles’ in the
dye-sub ink ribbon, even if the applied energy is increased by 20%,
compared to printheads with conventional overcoats.

The absolute value of the frictional resistance between the printhead
and the ink ribbon is reduced by a maximum of 30%.

Resistance to adhesion of residues (burnt deposits of ink or ink
ribbon back-coated agents) is increased by approximately six-fold,
contributing to improvements in both print speed and print quality.

Durability against thermo-chemical wear is increased four-fold,
contributing to increased printhead service life.

Development Background

With the increasing proliferation of high-quality digital cameras and
camera-equipped smart-phones in recent years, more people are taking and
printing digital pictures themselves, and to service the demand to print
those digital pictures, an increasing number of self-service photo
printing equipment is being installed at department stores and home
electronics stores. More dye-sublimation printers are employed in this
application than other photo-printing technologies because they offer
high print quality and compact size, allowing them to be located almost

The dye-sublimation printer, a type of thermal printer, works via a
process where the thermal printhead (hereinafter “head”) comes into
contact with the ink ribbon and sublimates the ink with the heat of the
head to print images on the paper. The color density is adjusted by
varying the level of applied heat (applied energy), and increased
frictional resistance is created between the head and ribbon as the
applied energy increases. Differences in applied energy simultaneously
in different locations on the head can result in differences in
frictional resistance, causing the ink ribbon to move at different
speeds and subsequently wrinkle, which in turn affects print speed and
print quality.

Addressing the demand for equipment capable of printing higher quality
photos faster, Kyocera has developed the new KC-91 protective overcoat
to significantly reduce the likelihood of ribbon wrinkles caused by
differential frictional resistances and to improve print speeds and
print quality.

With the world’s No.1 market share*2 for thermal printheads,
Kyocera strives to develop products that meet diverse customer needs and
prove useful in everyday life.

*1 Kyocera’s conventional KC-14 protective overcoat and the new KC-91
protective overcoat were compared through continuous printing by
commercial printers; based on research by Kyocera. *2 As of January
31, 2012; based on research by Kyocera.

To learn more details and view performance charts for this product,
please see:



/quotes/zigman/194992/quotes/nls/kyo KYO

(tokyo:6971) ( ),
the parent and global headquarters of the Kyocera Group, was founded in
1959 as a producer of fine
ceramics (also known as “advanced ceramics”). By combining these
engineered materials with metals and plastics, and integrating them with
other technologies, Kyocera has become a leading supplier of printing
devices, printers, copiers, electronic components, solar power
generating systems, telecommunications equipment, semiconductor
packages, cutting tools and industrial ceramics. During the year ended
March 31, 2011, the company’s net sales totaled 1.27 trillion yen
(approx. USD15.3 billion). The company is ranked #604 on Forbes
magazine’s 2011 “Global 2000” listing of the world’s largest publicly
traded companies.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:

SOURCE: Kyocera Corporation

        KYOCERA Corporation (Japan) 
        Judah Reynolds, +81-(0)75-604-3416 
        Corporate Communications 
        Fax: +81-(0)75-604-3516

Copyright Business Wire 2012


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