What is the technology of Continuous Inkjet (CIJ)?

CIJ printing: what is it then? How does it operate? Furthermore, learn why CIJ is recommended for industrial applications and how it might benefit your company. Now let’s get started.

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Although most households and workplaces have inkjet printers, “continuous inkjet,” or CIJ for short, is a separate kind of printing solution that is a leading technology for production and factory printing. CIJ printing: what is it then? How does it operate? Additionally, the reasons CIJ is favored in industrial settings. Now let’s get started:

What is the technique of continuous inkjet?

Continuous inkjet (CIJ) technology delivers a continuous stream of ink for printing on a medium by means of a special, inventive procedure, as its name suggests. This contrasts with the majority of home printers’ thermal drop-on-demand technique, which is often slower and limited in the materials it can print on. Enterprises that prioritize dependability, agility, and adaptability utilize CIJ printing technology.

How does the CIJ operate?

Since CIJ printing has been present since the 1970s, the underlying technology isn’t really novel. The simplest approach to comprehend the CIJ printing process is to dissect it into its component parts:

An ink supply pump transfers ink from the primary ink bottle via a pressure regulator and into the printing nozzle, which has a tiny aperture.

A piezoelectric crystal, which vibrates in response to an electric current, is connected to the printing nozzle. Small droplets of ink are produced by the continuous stream of ink breaking apart due to the ultrasonic vibration. The pace at which the ink droplets are released through the aperture may be altered by adjusting the current supplied to the piezoelectric crystal.

A charged electrode creates an electrostatic field that the ink droplets flow through. The droplets become electrostatically charged as a result. Not every droplet of ink has this charge; to prevent repulsion between succeeding drops, charged and uncharged particles are separated.

Two charged plates form a second electrostatic field that the stream of charged and uncharged droplets travels through. The charged plates deflect as a result, moving in the direction of the print medium. Each ink droplet’s deflection distance is governed by its electrostatic charge content.

The majority of the ink droplets are recycled; just a tiny percentage are deflected. The uncharged droplets finally gather in a recycling gutter after flowing at a straight stream. The ink droplets can be reused as this gutter runs back to the main ink bottle.

The advantages of CIJ technology application


An adjustable ultrasonic vibration mechanism and a tiny nozzle are used in CIJ systems to create extremely small inkjet droplets. Because of this, CIJ technology is a great option for printing designs with high resolution. Even CIJ printers with photo-quality printing capabilities exist. Because the entire procedure is automated, you can count on a CIJ printer to produce consistent results even when dealing with a big volume of items.


Because electrostatically charged particles are constantly and rapidly expelled from the print nozzle, CIJ technology is well suited for any hectic industrial setting. Additionally, because of their tiny size, the droplets dry almost instantly upon contact with the printing surface. The product doesn’t need to be mounted before the printing nozzle can begin working because the procedure is non-contact.


The ability of a non-contact printing technique like CIJ to print on any surface, regardless of form, is another benefit. A CIJ printer may be tuned and altered to provide the desired results whether printing on uneven surfaces, curved items, flexible materials, or flat surfaces. The thickness of the ink droplet stream and the printing speed may be varied by fine-tuning the nozzle vibration and electric current intensity.

Practically any material, including paper, metal, plastic, wood, and glass, as well as objects with varying forms and textures, may have markings or codes printed on them by a CIJ printer at any speed and in any direction.


A CIJ printer’s printing nozzle is always in use, therefore there’s less possibility of ink particles clogging it. CIJ printers have a very long operating life before they need to be serviced. This can prevent tiresome delays and lower production expenses.

CIJ technology applications in the industry

Despite all of its advantages, CIJ printing has mostly been applied in industrial settings where quality and speed are of the essence. Some of the most prevalent instances of CIJ printing are the expiry dates on the majority of food goods. Whether the food packaging is composed of glass, plastic, or paper, you can count on CIJ printing to print these markings and codes precisely and legibly.

Moreover, CIJ printing is a great option for printing product codes and lot numbers on electronics due to its non-contact feature. The smallest force or impact might cause harm to these incredibly fragile electrical components. Furthermore, the codes that are written on these parts are essential to preserving the electronic components’ traceability. These markings need to be lasting in addition to being readable.

In the same way, the automotive sector depends heavily on the idea of traceability. Assembling mistakes may be prevented by putting identifying numbers on every automotive component. A printed production or batch code can also assist manufacturers in determining the cause of a component failure and preventing other issues if it occurs.

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