Sunday, April 14, 2024

Thermal Printhead At HighSpeed With Single-Cell Li-ion Battery Drives

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Addressing challenges in thermal printing, this innovation matches the speed and quality of conventional heads powered by two cells, offering size and weight advantages and saving more energy.

ROHM introduces its latest innovation, the KR2002-Q06N5AA thermal printhead, designed for compatibility with a single-cell Li-ion battery drive (3.6V). This technology achieves high-performance printing and improves energy efficiency by approximately 30%. The rising prominence of payment terminals and logistics mobile label printers, driven by the growth of electronic money payments, necessitates efficient and reliable printing solutions. While 2-cell Li-ion battery thermal printers are currently favoured for their speed and print quality, single-cell Li-ion battery drives offer advantages of size, weight, and energy efficiency. However, challenges like slower printing speed and shorter battery life have hindered their widespread adoption.

To address these challenges, the company has developed this thermal printhead, capable of delivering the same print output as a 2-cell drive with a single Li-ion battery cell. This breakthrough is achieved through a new structure that optimises glaze design, adopts special low-resistance heat elements, and optimises the protective film structure on the heat elements. These innovations ensure efficient heat transfer to the print media, such as thermal paper and thermal transfer ribbons, while improving power efficiency. The key specifications include:

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  • Resolution: 203 dpi
  • Print Density: 48 mm
  • Number of Print Dots: 384
  • Printing Speed: 50 mm/s
  • Size: 80 mm (width) x 4.9 mm (thickness) x 53.5 mm (length)
  • Resistance: 8.38 Ω
  • Voltage Supply Range: 3.0 to 5.25 V
  • Maximum Print Height: 8.38 mm

The result is a thermal printhead that matches the printing speed and quality of conventional heads driven by two Li-ion battery cells (7.2V) using only one cell. The company has also reduced the energy required for printing by approximately 30% compared to existing single-cell drive thermal printheads. This enhances energy efficiency and reduces the size and weight of thermal printer equipment. The company is committed to expanding its lineup of thermal printheads, offering high image quality, industry-leading print speeds, and superior efficiency. The thermal printhead is priced at $7.0 per unit (samples, excluding tax). It will be available in OEM quantities starting December 2023, catering to applications such as logistics label printers, inventory management terminals, receipt printers for payment terminals, and POS (Point of Sales) printers.

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