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Piston-driven fluid-ejection apparatus

United States Patent

May 3, 2005
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A surface-micromachined fluid-ejection apparatus is disclosed which utilizes a piston to provide for the ejection of jets or drops of a fluid (e.g. for ink-jet printing). The piston, which is located at least partially inside a fluid reservoir, is moveable into a cylindrical fluid-ejection chamber connected to the reservoir by a microelectromechanical (MEM) actuator which is located outside the reservoir. In this way, the reservoir and fluid-ejection chamber can be maintained as electric-field-free regions thereby allowing the apparatus to be used with fluids that are electrically conductive or which may react or break down in the presence of a high electric field. The MEM actuator can comprise either an electrostatic actuator or a thermal actuator.
Galambos; Paul C. (Albuquerque, NM), Benavides; Gilbert L. (Los Ranchos, NM), Jokiel, Jr.; Bernhard (Albuquerque, NM), Jakubczak II; Jerome F. (Rio Rancho, NM)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
10/ 600,008
June 18, 2003
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.