Thermal inkjet printers, sometimes referred to as bubble jet printers, use thermal energy or electricity to heat ink and apply it to a medium. They can provide a low-cost option for high-speed printing, and can print on a variety of surfaces. HP and Canon are two of the leading manufacturers of this kind of Inkjet printer.
As early as 1979, Hewlett-Packard tried to design a printer compatible with its popular handheld calculators. Canon was also developing a "BubbleJet" printer. In 1984, HP introduced the "ThinkJet," followed by Canon debuting the BJ-80 in 1985. More research and development was put into the technology, refining the ink usage and number of nozzles that drop it. However, while efficient and cost-effective, these printers are still far from perfect, as the nozzles still wear down and get blocked.
Depending on the printer, 300 to 600 tiny nozzles heat up the ink in the cartridge, expanding it in a bubble. The ink from this bubble is pushed through a nozzle onto the paper. Eventually, the bubble collapses, or pops, and the air vacuum sucks more ink into the nozzles. Each of the nozzles can apply ink simultaneously, from both black and white or color cartridges.
Thermal inkjet printers are a low-cost option for printing and print at a fast speed with a high quality finish. They can print on a wide variety of surfaces, including regular and specialty papers, plastics, metals and cartons. Most of these printers are simple to use and require no training or practice. They do not have a warmup or cool down cycle, so they're always ready for you to use.
Make sure that the levels of ink in the cartridge don't get too low. As the nozzles heat up, the ink itself acts as a coolant, so if there's little or no ink left in the cartridge, the nozzles may become too hot and damage your printer. Alternatively, if the ink in a nozzle dries and hardens because of a depleted ink supply, it can prevent the nozzles from issuing more ink on subsequent print jobs. However, you can clean the nozzles with rubbing alcohol.
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