Using its own technology, POSCO has developed a high-resolution inkjet-printed steel by integrating inkjet printing technology with steel materials.
This new steel can be printed in full-color and its resolution is more than 1200 dpi (dots per inch)—four times higher than that of the existing material. It delivers meticulous design, allowing for the printing of repeating patterns or a split image of a massive work of art.
Making the best of these improvements, the newly developed steel is expected to replace the existing product in the market of household appliances, including refrigerators and washing machines, as well as interior and furniture materials.
The existing steel is used with roll printing or silk-screen printing. It boasts a lower resolution and can only be printed in a maximum of five colors. Its vulnerability to air and humidity facilitates discoloration, while its poor adhesion causes coating to peel and flake prematurely.
This has led POSCO to develop a new steel sheet that can be printed with inkjet technology using an ink solution that has high corrosion resistance and workability. This steel sheet presents more vivid colors compared to the previous one and the shortened work process largely reduces the production cost.
Pictured in the circle above is POSCO’s inkjet-printed steel applied to the outer wall of the parking garage of the RIST office. The color and texture of marble has been perfectly reproduced to the point that it is difficult to differentiate the sheet from real marble. It also completely resolves the corrosion of marble caused by wind and rain.
Recently, the Research Institute of Industrial Science and Technology (RIST), a research affiliate of POSCO, applied the inkjet-printed steel to the outer wall of its parking garage, creating a genuine marbleized effect in color and texture. It replaced the real marble wall that had been corroded by wind and rain, giving the building a beautiful, elegant look.
POSCO expects the inkjet printing technology will be widely used in the markets of household appliances and construction materials, both in Korea and internationally, resulting in increased sales of the company’s World Premium (WP) products.