Research Project Summary Information
New Generation Toner Particles for Xerographic Printing (ST10643-1)
Clarkson University is home of a New York State Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research (NYSTAR) center, the Center for Advanced Materials Processing (CAMP), specializing in advanced fine particle research. Toner particles are the critical material in the xerographic printing process. The modern polymerized emulsion aggregation (EA) toner particles are much improved in terms of size distribution and shape control. However, scattering of EA particles has been observed and can reduce image quality. Initial analysis indicates that problems with toner transfer are associated with the rolling and dislodgement mechanics of the EA toner particles as they are transferred to paper.
The project demonstrated a test bed to study the physical properties of the advanced EA particles and their effect on xerographic printing quality. The research studied various effects, such as shear stress, particle (electrical) size/shape/adhesion properties, particle materials, and mechanical and chemical properties of coating nanoparticles on the scattering toner during particle transfer from photoreceptor to paper and transfer efficiency. The test bed was equipped with a computer-controlled micro/nano-manipulation system, and monitoring charge-coupled device (CCD) cameras. The research developed techniques and design rules to improve toner transfer and create a more energy efficient process for achieving optimal printing quality.
The test-bed technology developed in this feasibility study will enable the use of EA toner, which uses 25%-35% less energy per lb. of toner. Toner needed for printing is decreased by 40-50% (energy savings of approximately 60-70% per printed page), and reduction in waste by 25-30%.
This feasibility study yielded two adhesion characterization methods (a non-contact acoustic method and an atomic force microscopy [AFM]) tip-based contact pushing technique), and associated experimental set-ups. The results of the studies conducted with the aid of these experimental set-ups indicated that the toner adhesion characterization of individual toner particles can be performed, and accurate effective work of adhesion measurements can be conducted for single particle systems. The adhesion characterization results from the two set-ups are consistent. The project is ready for the next level of implementation: demonstration and commercialization.
Based on this NYSERDA-supported research, a patent was issued for the method and device for measuring toner performance.
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R&D - Mfg Tech & On-Site Pwr