Inkjet printed images are composed of ink droplets with volumes of a few pico litres each. Acurate positioning of the single droplets on the substrat is a crucial factor for the print quality while droplet impingement and subsequent spreading determine shape and size of individual dots. Moreover, on impermeable substrates, coalescence of neighbouring droplets leads to the droplets being shifted relative to the nozzle position. Additionally, impingement, spreading and coalescence of the ink droplets are influenced by heat and mass transfer processes.
In order to gain a better understanding of the interactions within the printing process between heat and mass transport on one side and the hydrodynamics on the other side, numerical simulations with the algebraic Volume-of-Fluid method are conducted within the scope of this research project. By including appropriate material models, the influence of the temperature distribution and surfactant concentration on the hydrodynamics is taken into account in the numerical model.
The project is associated with the Collaborative Research Center 1194: Interaction between Transport and Wetting Processes.