The physics of inkjet printing onto thin porous media (V34.3877)

The physics of inkjet printing onto thin porous media

The Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) is looking for a PhD-student on "The physics of inkjet printing onto thin porous media".
Department of Applied Physics
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Job description

Background information and research objectives
Inkjet technology is an important tool in our homes and offices, in the printing industry and in emerging medical and high-tech applications. The worldwide consumption of inkjet inks was estimated to increase from 69 to 111 million liters from 2007 to 2012. This emphasizes the importance of using environmentally friendly solvents (i.e. water) for inkjet inks. While aqueous inkjet printing performs superbly on expensive paper coated with microporous layers, the print quality on uncoated, recycled copier paper is generally less optimal. Moreover, ink colorants cause considerable difficulty in paper recycling during the deinking process, which increases the use of energy, water and aggressive chemicals. Therefore, minimizing the ink quantity required is imperative. In a collaboration between the Eindhoven University of Technology, the University of Twente and Océ, we are looking for an enthusiastic, experimentally-oriented PhD student to investigate the complex multiscale and multiphase ink-substrate interactions.

The goal is to develop depth-resolved measurement techniques based e.g. on the reflection, transmission and emission of infrared light in order to quantify the dynamic redistribution of ink constituents into the printing medium. These methods will allow a systematic study of the three-dimensional imbibition-, sorption- and evaporation dynamics to provide data for a quantitative comparison with numerical simulations. Corresponding computational models based on molecular dynamics and lattice-Boltzmann techniques will be developed by two additional PhD students (see separate vacancy descriptions). The outcome of these experiments and simulations will be combined into a novel macroscale model that can predict the flow of ink on thin porous substrates, such that the following questions can be addressed:

  • What are the key transport mechanisms and parameters relevant at different scales?
  • How does the nanostructure of the medium affect swelling?
  • What is the role of surfactants in the imbibition dynamics?
  • How does the presence of colorants affect the ink redistribution?
  • Can inkjet printing processes be optimized, such that the variability of the print quality with respect to paper properties is minimized?
  • How can the required ink quantity be minimized?

Job requirements

Interested candidates possessing fluency in English and a Master’s degree in Physics, Chemical or Mechanical Engineering or equivalent are encouraged to apply. Experience in fluid dynamics and optics is desirable but not required.

Conditions of employment

This position offers full-time employment for 4 years, with an initial evaluation period. The monthly (gross) salary will be € 2325 in the first year and increases to € 2972 in the fourth year, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement of the Dutch Universities. The TU/e offers attractive secondary labour conditions.

Information and application

For more detailed information about the position, please contact Prof. Anton A. Darhuber (a.a.darhuber[at]

Please send your application (including the contact information of the candidate, a CV, copies of transcripts/grade-sheets, the contact information of one or more references, as well as a copy of the Master’s thesis and (p)reprints of prior publications, if available) by using the 'Apply for this job' - button on this page.