JP5272806B2 - Droplet discharging method and color filter manufacturing method - Google Patents

Droplet discharging method and color filter manufacturing method Download PDF

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JP5272806B2
JP5272806B2 JP2009050320A JP2009050320A JP5272806B2 JP 5272806 B2 JP5272806 B2 JP 5272806B2 JP 2009050320 A JP2009050320 A JP 2009050320A JP 2009050320 A JP2009050320 A JP 2009050320A JP 5272806 B2 JP5272806 B2 JP 5272806B2
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nozzles
sheet member
ink
color filter
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JP2010204412A (en
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任 後藤
貞治 小森
剛 加藤
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セイコーエプソン株式会社
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Abstract

<P>PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To provide: a liquid drop discharge device, restraining deterioration of image quality by making uneven ribbing inconspicuous, and having excellent production efficiency; a liquid drop discharge method; and a method of manufacturing a color filter. <P>SOLUTION: The liquid drop discharge device includes: a liquid drop discharge head 5 having a plurality of nozzles and a plurality of driving elements provided corresponding to the plurality of nozzles; a supply reel 12 for supplying a sheet member 15; a take-up reel 13 for taking up the sheet member 15; a drying gas jet device 34 for drying the surface of the sheet member 15; an imaging device 14 for imaging an image of a functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles to the dried sheet member 15; an analyzing means 32 for conducting the image processing for the image photographed by the imaging device 14 to measure an impact area of the functional liquid on the sheet member 15, and obtaining a distribution of discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles; and a control means 31 for adjusting the voltage applied to the plurality of driving elements so that the discharge amount in the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined proper amount from the distribution. <P>COPYRIGHT: (C)2010,JPO&amp;INPIT

Description

The present invention relates to a droplet discharge method and a color filter manufacturing method.

  2. Description of the Related Art In recent years, electro-optical devices such as liquid crystal devices and organic EL (Electro-Luminescent) devices have been used for display units of electronic devices such as mobile phones and portable computers. These electro-optical devices generally perform full color display. For example, full color display by a liquid crystal device is displayed by passing light modulated by a liquid crystal layer through a color filter. Such a color filter is formed by ejecting ink on the surface of a substrate in a dot shape by a film forming technique using a droplet discharge method.

  By the way, in the film forming technique using the droplet discharge method, the ink discharge amounts of the plurality of nozzles vary slightly. When the ink is drawn with variations in the ink discharge amount, streaky shading unevenness (straight unevenness) may occur in the color filter. Such uneven stripes are easily visible, and the image quality displayed through the color filter may be degraded.

  A technique for solving such a problem has been studied. For example, in Patent Document 1, a medium to be colored is colored with a plurality of different ink discharge densities, and the color density of the colored portion is measured to obtain a plurality of colors. The relationship between the color density of each colored portion colored with a different ink discharge density and the corresponding ink discharge density is calculated. Based on this relationship, a reduction in the image quality of the display image is suppressed by correcting the ink discharge density to obtain a desired color density.

JP-A-10-260306

  In Patent Document 1, the color density of each colored portion colored with different ink discharge densities is represented by the absorbance of the colored portion of the medium to be colored. If an error occurs during the measurement of the absorbance, correction with high accuracy cannot be performed, and it may be difficult to suppress deterioration in image quality.

  On the other hand, a method of measuring the weight of ink ejected from a plurality of nozzles is conventionally used. However, measuring the weight of the ink is not preferable in terms of mass production because it is not easy to measure and requires a large number of man-hours, and is inferior in production efficiency.

  The present invention has been made in view of such circumstances, and it is possible to suppress deterioration in image quality without making stripes inconspicuous, and to further improve production efficiency, a droplet discharge device, a droplet discharge method, and It is an object to provide a method for producing a color filter.

In order to solve the above problems, a droplet discharge apparatus according to the present invention includes a plurality of nozzles that discharge a functional liquid and a plurality of drive elements that are provided corresponding to the plurality of nozzles. A supply reel that supplies a sheet member for landing the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles, a take-up reel that winds up the sheet member supplied from the supply reel, and a supply reel that is supplied from the supply reel A dry gas jetting device for drying the surface of the sheet member, and the sheet member between the supply reel and the take-up reel dried by the dry gas jetting device are discharged from the plurality of nozzles. An imaging device that captures an image of the functional fluid; and image processing of the image captured by the imaging device to measure a landing area of the functional fluid on the sheet member Analyzing means for obtaining a distribution of the discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles, and applying to the plurality of driving elements so that the discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined appropriate amount from the distribution. And a control means for adjusting the voltage.
According to this configuration, the surface of the sheet member is dried by the dry gas ejection device. And the image which the ink (functional liquid) discharged from the several nozzle landed by the imaging device is image | photographed. Then, the distribution of the ejection amount of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles is obtained based on the landing area of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles by the analyzing means. Then, the voltage applied to the drive element is adjusted by the control means so that the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined appropriate amount. That is, the variation in the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles is corrected by the control means. For this reason, a uniform amount of ink can be ejected from all nozzles of the droplet ejection head. Further, since the surface of the sheet member is dried, the variation in the ink landing area on the sheet member is reduced. That is, the surface of the sheet member has a predetermined permeability with respect to the ink, and the permeability should be uniformly controlled. The surface permeation becomes non-uniform for some reason (for example, the penetration of moisture in the air by the ink receiving layer on the surface of the sheet member). This may cause problems in measurement. Therefore, in the droplet discharge device of the present invention, the surface of the sheet member is dried in advance before the ink is landed to make the surface permeability uniform. This makes it possible to accurately measure the ink landing area on the sheet member. Further, high controllability can be obtained in the subsequent adjustment of the ink discharge amount. For this reason, it is possible to make the ink landing area uniform in all nozzles of the droplet discharge head. Accordingly, it is possible to suppress the deterioration of the image quality by making the stripes inconspicuous. In addition, a method for drying the surface of a sheet member with a dry gas ejection device and obtaining a distribution of the ejection amount of ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles based on the landing area of the ink at the plurality of nozzles is a plurality of conventional methods. Compared with the method of measuring the weight of the ink ejected from the nozzles, it does not take a huge amount of man-hours, so the production efficiency is excellent. In addition, since the sheet member on which the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles has landed is appropriately conveyed, the landing area can be measured efficiently.

The sheet member may have a porous ink receiving layer in which a pigment is bound with a binder.
According to this configuration, a substantially uniform amount of ink is ejected from all the nozzles of the droplet ejection head, and the ink landing area in all the nozzles is remarkably uniform. In particular, when the sheet member has a porous ink-receiving layer, the ink-receiving layer surface is easily filled by moisture absorption, and the size of the space is likely to be uneven. Since the property should be controlled uniformly, it has a remarkable effect.

The droplet discharge method of the present invention is a droplet discharge method using a droplet discharge head having a plurality of nozzles for discharging a functional liquid and a plurality of drive elements provided corresponding to the plurality of nozzles. After the first drying treatment step for drying the surface of the sheet member, the first landing step for landing the functional liquid on the sheet member after the first drying treatment step, and after the first landing step A first analysis step of measuring a first landing area of the functional liquid landed on the sheet member and obtaining a distribution of a discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles; and And a first control step of adjusting a voltage to be applied to the plurality of drive elements so that the discharge amount at the nozzle approaches a predetermined appropriate amount.
According to this manufacturing method, the surface of the sheet member is dried by the first drying process, and variations in the ink landing area on the sheet member are reduced. Then, the distribution of the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles is obtained by the first analysis step after the first landing step. In the first control step, the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles is adjusted to approach a predetermined appropriate amount. As a result, the variation in the ink discharge amount among the plurality of nozzles is corrected. For this reason, it is possible to discharge a uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles of the droplet discharge head and make the ink landing area uniform in all the nozzles. Accordingly, it is possible to suppress the deterioration of the image quality by making the stripes inconspicuous.

In the droplet discharge method, after the first control step, the functional liquid is applied to the sheet member after a second drying treatment step for drying the surface of the sheet member, and after the second drying treatment step. After the second landing step for landing and the second landing step, the second landing area of the functional liquid landed on the sheet member is measured, and the discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles is measured. A second analysis step for obtaining a distribution and a second control step for adjusting a voltage to be applied to the plurality of drive elements so that the discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined appropriate amount from the distribution. It is desirable to have it once.
According to this manufacturing method, after the first control step, the drying process step, the landing step, the analysis step, and the control step are repeated a plurality of times, thereby causing variations in the ink discharge amount among the plurality of nozzles and the plurality of nozzles. The variation of the landing area in the is reliably adjusted. For this reason, it is possible to discharge a substantially uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles of the droplet discharge head, and to make the ink landing area in all the nozzles extremely uniform. Therefore, it is possible to make the unevenness more inconspicuous and to suppress the deterioration of the image quality.

The method for producing a color filter of the present invention is characterized in that the functional liquid is disposed in a predetermined region provided on a base material to form a color filter using the droplet discharge method described above.
According to this manufacturing method, as described above, a uniform amount of ink is ejected from all nozzles of the droplet ejection head, and the landed area of ink at all nozzles is made uniform. Color filters can be manufactured.

It is a schematic diagram which shows schematic structure of the droplet discharge apparatus of this invention. It is a schematic diagram which shows schematic structure of a droplet discharge head. It is explanatory drawing of the method of forming a color filter on a color filter board | substrate. It is a flowchart which shows the process of a droplet discharge method. It is a figure which shows the state of the ink receiving layer of the sheet | seat member surface before and behind moisture permeation. It is a figure which shows the arrangement | positioning state of the ink before and behind the correction | amendment of the landing area dispersion | variation. It is a figure which shows the discharge characteristic of the droplet discharge head before and after dispersion | variation correction | amendment of an ink discharge amount.

  Embodiments of the present invention will be described below with reference to the drawings. This embodiment shows one aspect of the present invention, and does not limit the present invention, and can be arbitrarily changed within the scope of the technical idea of the present invention. Moreover, in the following drawings, in order to make each structure easy to understand, an actual structure and a scale, a number, and the like in each structure are different.

  In the following description, the XYZ rectangular coordinate system shown in FIG. 1 is set, and each member will be described with reference to this XYZ rectangular coordinate system. In the XYZ orthogonal coordinate system, the X axis and the Y axis are set in a direction parallel to the work stage 16, and the Z axis is set in a direction orthogonal to the work stage 16. In the XYZ coordinate system in FIG. 1, the XY plane is actually set to a plane parallel to the horizontal plane, and the Z axis is set to the vertically upward direction.

(Droplet discharge device)
FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram showing a schematic configuration of a droplet discharge device 1 according to the present invention. The droplet discharge device 1 is a device that forms a color filter layer by discharging droplets of a color filter material (functional liquid) onto a predetermined region of a color filter substrate (base material) P by, for example, an inkjet method. The droplet discharge device 1 also performs the droplet discharge method of the present invention.

  The droplet discharge device 1 includes a work stage 16, a droplet discharge head 5, a tube 45, a tank 33, a sheet member conveyance table 11, a supply reel 12, a take-up reel 13, an area measurement camera (imaging device) 14, and a control unit. (Control means) 31, analysis unit (analysis means) 32, dry gas ejection device 34, first wiring 41, second wiring 42, third wiring 43, and fourth wiring 44 are provided.

  The work stage 16 is installed so as to be movable in the X-axis direction by a stage moving device (not shown). The work stage 16 holds the color filter substrate P transported from a transport apparatus (not shown) on the XY plane by a vacuum suction mechanism (not shown).

  The droplet discharge head 5 is electrically connected to the control unit 31 via the first wiring 41. The droplet discharge head 5 has a plurality of nozzles N (see FIG. 2), and discharges droplets of color filter material based on drawing data and drive control signals input from the control unit 31. The droplet discharge heads 5 are provided corresponding to the color filter materials R (red), G (green), and B (blue). The droplet discharge head 5 is connected to the tank 33 through a tube 45.

  The droplet discharge head 5 includes a bearing mechanism (not shown) such as a pole screw or a linear guide in the Y-axis direction and the Z-axis direction. The droplet discharge head 5 is movable in the Y-axis direction and the Z-axis direction based on the position control signal indicating the Y coordinate and the Z coordinate input from the control unit 31.

  The tube 45 is a tube for supplying a color filter material that connects the tank 33 and the droplet discharge head 5. The tank 33 stores three color filter materials: a color filter material for R (red), a color filter material for G (green), and a color filter material for B (blue). The tank 33 stores the color filter materials of three colors and supplies the color filter materials to the droplet discharge heads 5 corresponding to the three colors via the tubes 45.

  The sheet member transport table 11 is movable in the X-axis direction by a transport table moving device (not shown). The sheet member conveying table 11 is a conveying table for the sheet member 15 that conveys the belt-shaped sheet member 15 supplied from the supply reel 12. The sheet member 15 supplied from the supply reel 12 is taken up by the take-up reel 13.

  The sheet member 15 is a recording medium on which dot-shaped landing areas of ink (functional liquid) ejected from a plurality of nozzles N of the droplet ejection head 5 can be recorded. As the sheet member 15, for example, recording paper such as roll paper can be used. In addition, as the sheet member 15, a substrate having water repellency such as a glass substrate can be used instead of the roll paper. Further, as the other sheet member 15, for example, a sheet in which an ink receiving layer is provided on a base material such as paper or a plastic film can be used.

  In the present embodiment, a sheet in which an ink receiving layer is provided on a plastic film is used as the sheet member 15. The ink receiving layer will be described later (see FIG. 5).

  Further, the sheet member 15 may be used for confirming the discharge state (nozzle omission and bending) of the plurality of nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5 before production, that is, before drawing on the color filter substrate P. is there.

  The area measuring camera 14 is disposed at a position facing the recording surface (upper surface) of the sheet member 15 on the sheet member conveying table 11. The area measurement camera 14 is a camera that photographs the landing area of ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N to the sheet member 15. The area measurement camera 14 is electrically connected to the analysis unit 32 via the second wiring 42. The area measurement camera 14 outputs image data of the shot ink landing area to the analysis unit 32.

  The analysis unit 32 measures the landing area by image processing the ink landing area image data photographed by the area measurement camera 14, and discharges ink from the plurality of nozzles N based on the obtained landing area measurement data. It has a function for obtaining a distribution of quantities. The analysis unit 32 is electrically connected to the control unit 31 via the third wiring 43. The analysis unit 32 outputs the measurement data of the ink discharge amount distribution at the plurality of nozzles N to the control unit 31.

  The dry gas ejection device 34 is disposed at a position facing the recording surface (upper surface) of the sheet member 15 on the sheet member conveyance table 11. The dry gas ejection device 34 has a function of performing a drying process so as to adjust the permeability of the sheet member 15 to the ink. The dry gas ejection device 34 is electrically connected to the control unit 31 via the fourth wiring 44. Connected.

  The control unit 31 adjusts the voltage to be applied to the drive element PZ (see FIG. 2) based on the measurement data of the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N input from the analysis unit 32. Specifically, the control unit 31 adjusts the voltage applied to the drive element PZ so that the ink discharge amount from the plurality of nozzles N approaches a predetermined appropriate amount. Then, the variation in the ink discharge amount of the plurality of nozzles N is adjusted by the drive element PZ. That is, the variation in the ink discharge amount among the plurality of nozzles N is corrected.

  After the variation in the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N is corrected, the work stage 16 is arranged at a position facing the dry gas ejection surface (lower surface) of the dry gas ejection device 34 by the stage moving device. Then, the drying process of the color filter substrate P held on the work stage 16 is performed by the dry gas ejection device 34. Thereafter, droplets of the color filter material are ejected from the plurality of nozzles N of the droplet ejection head 5 to predetermined positions on the color filter substrate P.

  FIG. 2 is a schematic diagram showing a schematic configuration of the droplet discharge head 5. 2A is a plan view of the droplet discharge head 5 viewed from the work stage 16, FIG. 2B is a partial perspective view of the droplet discharge head 5, and FIG. It is a fragmentary sectional view of 1 nozzle.

As shown in FIG. 2A, the droplet discharge head 5 includes a plurality of (for example, 180) nozzles N 1 to N 180 arranged in the Y-axis direction. A nozzle row NA is formed by the nozzles N 1 to N 180 . Although FIG. 2A shows one row of nozzles, the number of nozzles and the number of nozzle rows provided in the droplet discharge head 5 can be arbitrarily changed, and the nozzles for one row arranged in the Y-axis direction are arranged as X. A plurality of rows may be provided in the axial direction.

As shown in FIG. 2 (b), the droplet discharge head 5, a vibration plate 20 that material supply hole 20a is provided which is connected to the tube 45, a nozzle plate 21 in which the nozzles N 1 to N 180 is provided A liquid reservoir 22 provided between the vibration plate 20 and the nozzle plate 21, a plurality of partition walls 23, and a plurality of storage chambers 24 are provided. Drive elements PZ 1 to PZ 180 are arranged on the vibration plate 20 corresponding to the nozzles N1 to N180. The drive elements PZ 1 to PZ 180 are, for example, piezo elements.

The liquid reservoir 22 is filled with a liquid color filter material supplied through the material supply hole 20a. The storage chamber 24 is formed so as to be surrounded by the vibration plate 20, the nozzle plate 21, and a pair of partition walls 23. The storage chamber 24 is provided in a one-to-one correspondence with each of the nozzles N 1 to N 180 . In addition, the color filter material is introduced into the respective storage chambers 24 from the liquid reservoir 22 through a supply port 24 a provided between the pair of partition walls 23.

As shown in FIG. 2C, the drive element PZ 1 is obtained by sandwiching a piezoelectric material 25 between a pair of electrodes 26. The drive element PZ 1 is configured such that the piezoelectric material 25 contracts when a drive signal is applied to the pair of electrodes 26. The vibration plate 20 such drive elements PZ 1 is disposed, wrinkles become integral with the drive element PZ 1 applies a driving signal to the pair of electrodes 26 to the outside (opposite side of the accommodating chamber 24) at the same time It bends, and thereby the volume of the storage chamber 24 is increased.

Accordingly, the color filter material corresponding to the increased volume in the storage chamber 24 flows from the liquid reservoir 22 through the supply port 24a. Further, when the application of the drive signal to the drive element PZ 1 is stopped from such a state, the drive element PZ 1 and the diaphragm 20 both return to the original shape, and the storage chamber 24 also returns to the original volume. Accordingly, accommodation chamber pressure of the color filter material 24 is increased, the droplet L of the color filter material is ejected toward the nozzle N 1 on the color filter substrate P. In addition, by using the drive element PZ 1 , it is possible to cause fine vibration in the storage chamber 24 and adjust the ink discharge amount with high accuracy.

  FIG. 3 is an explanatory diagram of a method for forming a color filter layer (color filter) CF on the color filter substrate P using the droplet discharge head 5. FIG. 3A is a schematic plan view of a color filter substrate P that is an ink discharge target. FIG. 3B is a partially enlarged plan view of the color filter substrate P.

  In FIG. 3A, a plurality of panel areas CA are set on the surface of a large-area color filter substrate P formed of glass, plastic or the like. Each panel area CA is separated (cut) from each other and provided as an individual color filter substrate. In each panel area CA, as shown in FIG. 3B, a plurality of pixels PX (predetermined areas) arranged in a dot shape are provided. The pixels PX are arranged in a matrix in each panel area CA, and a color filter layer (colored layer) CF is formed for each pixel PX.

  The vertical direction (indicated by arrows A1 and A2) in FIG. 3B is the main scanning direction, and the direction orthogonal to the main scanning direction (left and right direction in the drawing) is the sub-scanning direction. Arranged on the filter substrate P. Then, while moving (scanning) the color filter substrate P relative to the droplet discharge head 5 in the main scanning direction and the sub-scanning direction, ink containing a coloring material from a plurality of nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5 ( Color filter material) is discharged, and a color filter layer CF is formed on each pixel PX on the color filter substrate P.

  The droplet discharge head 5 is scanned a plurality of times for one panel area CA. For example, after the droplet discharge head 5 is scanned in the main scanning direction, the droplet discharge head 5 is moved (scanned) in the sub-scanning direction, and scanning is performed again in the main scanning direction. When one panel area CA moves from the left end to the right end (sub-scanning), it returns to the left end of the panel area CA again, and scans in the main scanning direction at a position slightly different from the position where ejection has already been performed. Then, the color filter layer CF having a desired film thickness is formed on all the pixels PX in the panel area CA by performing such scanning a plurality of times.

  In FIG. 3B, the reason why the droplet discharge head 5 is inclined with respect to the sub-scanning direction is to match the pitch of the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5 with the pitch of the pixels PX. If the pitch of the nozzles N and the pitch of the pixels PX are set so as to satisfy a predetermined correspondence relationship, it is not necessary to tilt the droplet discharge head 5 obliquely.

  The color filter layer CF is formed by arranging R, G, and B colors in an appropriate arrangement form such as a so-called stripe arrangement, delta arrangement, mosaic arrangement, or the like. Therefore, in the ink ejection process shown in FIG. 3B, the droplet ejection heads 5 that eject R, G, and B color filter materials are prepared in advance for the three colors R, G, and B. Then, an array of three color filter layers CF of R, G, and B is formed on one color filter substrate P using these droplet discharge heads 5 in order.

  By the way, in general, in a droplet discharge head, there is a slight variation in ink discharge characteristics (discharge amount) between nozzles (see FIG. 6A). If there is a variation in the amount of ink discharged between the nozzles, the amount of ink placement (landing area) on the color filter substrate P varies due to this, which causes the color filter to be uneven. .

  FIG. 6 is a diagram illustrating an ink arrangement state on the sheet member 15 before and after the correction of the variation in the ink landing area at the plurality of nozzles N. FIG. FIG. 6A shows an ink arrangement state before correction of variation in landing area. FIG. 6B shows the ink arrangement after correction of the variation in the landing area. In FIG. 6, M (M1 to M5) indicates the arrangement state of the ink corresponding to the plurality of nozzles N arranged in the Y-axis direction described above. Further, MA (MA1 to MA5) indicates an ink arrangement row corresponding to a plurality of nozzle rows NA in which a plurality of rows of nozzles arranged in the Y-axis direction are provided in the X-axis direction. As shown in FIG. 6A, when the arrangement state of the ink corresponding to the plurality of nozzles N and the plurality of nozzle arrays NA is seen, it is confirmed that there is a variation in the landing area as a whole.

  Therefore, in the droplet discharge method of the present invention, the voltage applied to the drive element PZ of the droplet discharge head 5 is adjusted before drawing on the color filter substrate P before correction (before production), and a plurality of nozzles In addition to providing a process for adjusting the ejection characteristics of the ink in N, a process for drying the surface by the dry gas ejection device 34 and adjusting the ink landing area in the plurality of nozzles N is provided. Hereinafter, an example of the droplet discharge method of the present invention will be described.

(Droplet ejection method)
FIG. 4 is a flowchart showing the steps of the droplet discharge method of the present invention. The droplet discharge method of the present invention includes an “apparatus alignment process” (step S1) in which the apparatus is positioned by positioning the apparatus at a predetermined position, and “first drying” in which the surface of the sheet member 15 is dried. “Processing Step” (Step S2), “First Landing Step” (Step S3) in which the voltage applied to the driving element PZ is made constant and ink is landed on the sheet member 15, and the sheet member 15 after the first landing step. A “first analysis step” (step S4) for measuring the landed first landing area and obtaining the distribution of ink discharge amounts at the plurality of nozzles N, and a “sheet member winding step” for winding the sheet member 15 (step S5), and a “first control step” (step S6) for adjusting the voltage applied to the drive element PZ so that the ink discharge amount from the plurality of nozzles N approaches a predetermined appropriate amount.

  First, the apparatus is positioned at a predetermined position to align the apparatus (step S1 in FIG. 4). Specifically, the sheet member conveyance table 11 is moved in the X-axis direction and disposed immediately below the dry gas ejection device 34. Thereby, the sheet member 15 on the sheet member conveyance table 11 is disposed so as to face the dry gas ejection surface (lower surface) of the dry gas ejection device 34.

  Next, the drying process which adjusts the permeability | transmittance with respect to the ink of the sheet | seat member 15 by the dry gas ejection apparatus 34 is performed. (Step S2 in FIG. 4). Specifically, a dry gas that makes the ink permeability uniform is ejected from the dry gas ejection device 34 onto the sheet member 15. For example, air or nitrogen gas can be used for the irradiation of the dry gas to make the permeability of the sheet member 15 to the ink uniform.

  In this way, the variation in the landing area of the plurality of nozzles N is adjusted by the dry gas ejection device 34. As a result, variations in the ink landing area at the plurality of nozzles N are corrected. For this reason, it is possible to make the ink landing area uniform in all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5.

  In the present embodiment, in contrast to the conventional method for measuring the weight of ink ejected from a plurality of nozzles, the surface of the sheet member 15 is dried by the dry gas ejection device 34, and the ink landing area at the plurality of nozzles N is determined. Is used to obtain the distribution of the ejection amount of ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N. As a result, it is not necessary to measure the weight of the ink as in the conventional case, and a huge number of man-hours are not required.

  In addition, since the surface of the sheet member 15 is subjected to a drying process, variations in the ink landing area on the sheet member 15 are reduced. This is because the permeability of the surface of the sheet member 15 to the ink is made uniform by drying the surface of the sheet member 15. Hereinafter, the permeability of the sheet member 15 to the ink will be described with reference to the state of the ink receiving layer of the sheet member 15 before and after moisture absorption.

  FIG. 5 is a diagram illustrating the state of the ink receiving layer of the sheet member 15 before and after moisture absorption. FIG. 5A is a diagram illustrating a state of the ink receiving layer 50a before moisture absorption. FIG. 5B shows the state of the ink receiving layer 50b after moisture absorption.

  As shown in FIGS. 5A and 5B, the ink receiving layers 50 a and 50 b include a plurality of pigments 51 and binders 52. The pigment 51 is included in the binder 52. The ink receiving layers 50 a and 50 b have a porous structure having a large number of voids 53 between the plurality of binders 52. In the ink receiving layer 50b, the size of the gap 53 is smaller than that of the ink receiving layer 50a. This is because the pigment 51 and the binder 52 constituting the ink receiving layer expand due to moisture absorption.

  Examples of pigments that can be used in the porous ink receiving layer include light calcium carbonate, heavy calcium carbonate, magnesium carbonate, kaolin, talc, calcium sulfate, barium sulfate, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, zinc sulfide, zinc carbonate, White inorganics such as satin white, aluminum silicate, diatomaceous earth, calcium silicate, magnesium silicate, synthetic amorphous silica, colloidal silica, alumina, alumina hydrate, aluminum hydroxide, lithopone, zeolite, hydrohalosite, magnesium hydroxide Examples thereof include organic pigments such as pigments, styrene plastic pigments, acrylic plastic pigments, polyethylene, microcapsules, urea resins, and melamine resins. In the ink receiving layer, one of these may be contained alone, or two or more thereof may be used in combination.

  The binder contained in the ink receiving layer as the binder for the pigment may contain a water-soluble or water-insoluble polymer compound having affinity with the ink. Examples of the water-soluble polymer compound include cellulose-based adhesives such as methylcellulose, methylhydroxyethylcellulose, methylhydroxypropylcellulose, and hydroxyethylcellulose, starch and modified products thereof, gelatin and modified products thereof, casein, pullulan, gum arabic, And natural polymer resins such as albumin or derivatives thereof, polyvinyl alcohol and modified products thereof, styrene-butadiene copolymer, styrene-acrylic copolymer, methyl methacrylate-butadiene copolymer, ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer, etc. Latex, emulsions, vinyl polymers such as polyacrylamide and polyvinylpyrrolidone, polyethyleneimine, polypropylene glycol, polyethylene glycol, and maleic anhydride Coalescence, and the like.

  Examples of the water-insoluble polymer compound include water-insoluble adhesives that dissolve in alcohols such as ethanol and 2-propanol and mixed solvents of these alcohols and water. Examples of such a water-insoluble adhesive include acetal resins such as vinylpyrrolidone / vinyl acetate copolymer, polyvinyl butyral, and polyvinyl formal.

  Incidentally, the sheet member 15 is generally stored in a predetermined atmosphere so that moisture does not penetrate into the ink receiving layer. However, since the pigment 51 and the binder 52 constituting the ink receiving layer have good hygroscopicity, the pigment 51 and the binder 52 in the air from storage to use (for example, ink landing process) The permeability of the surface of the sheet member 15 becomes non-uniform due to the penetration of moisture. If the permeability of the surface of the sheet member 15 is not uniform, it may cause a problem in the measurement of the ink landing area on the sheet member 15.

  Therefore, in the droplet discharge device 1 of the present invention, before the ink is landed, the surface of the sheet member 15 is dried in advance, and a plurality of gaps 53 existing between the plurality of binders 52 constituting the ink receiving layer. The surface permeability is made uniform by making the size of the entire surface uniform. This makes it possible to accurately measure the ink landing area on the sheet member 15. Further, high controllability can be obtained in the subsequent adjustment of the ink discharge amount. That is, the variation in the landing area of the ink that has occurred between the plurality of nozzles N in the initial state (before correction) in FIG. 6A can be approximately averaged as shown after correction in FIG. .

  Next, a voltage is applied to the drive element PZ to land the ink on the sheet member 15 (step S3 in FIG. 4). Specifically, the sheet member conveyance table 11 is moved in the X-axis direction toward the work stage 16 and is disposed immediately below the droplet discharge head 5. As a result, the sheet member 15 on the sheet member conveyance table 11 is disposed so as to face the plurality of nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5. Then, the voltage applied to the drive element PZ is made constant, and ink is landed on the sheet member 15. The ink is preferably landed in an appropriate arrangement form such as a stripe arrangement, a delta arrangement, or a mosaic arrangement in accordance with the color filter layer CF. Thereby, the ink ejection state before correction (when ejecting to the sheet member 15) and the ink ejection state after correction (when ejecting to the color filter substrate P) at the plurality of nozzles N of the droplet ejection head 5 , Will ensure alignment.

  In addition, when the ink is landed on the sheet member 15, it is preferable to land the ink in a plurality of times. Specifically, first, the first ink is landed on a predetermined area on the sheet member 15. Next, the second ink is landed on a region where the first ink is not landed. Thereby, since ink can be repeatedly landed on the sheet member 15 a plurality of times, the sheet member 15 can be used effectively without waste.

  Next, the landing area of the ink that has landed on the sheet member 15 is measured, and the distribution of the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N is obtained based on the obtained measurement data of the landing area (step S4 in FIG. 4). Specifically, the area of the ink discharged from the plurality of nozzles N to the sheet member 15 is photographed by the area measurement camera 14 disposed at a position facing the upper surface of the sheet member 15. At this time, the magnification of the lens of the area measurement camera 14 is preferably set to 4 to 10 times, for example, in terms of measurement accuracy and measurement time. Further, the N number for measuring the ink landing area is preferably set to N = 20 to 30 from the viewpoint of measurement accuracy.

  The ink landing area image data photographed by the area measurement camera 14 is output to the analysis unit 32. Then, the ink landing area at the plurality of nozzles N is measured by the analysis unit 32, and the distribution of the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N is obtained based on the measurement data of the landing area. The distribution data of the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N is output to the control unit 31.

  Next, the sheet member 15 is wound up (step S5 in FIG. 4). Specifically, the sheet member 15 on which ink is landed is taken up by the take-up reel 13. That is, a new sheet member 15 that is not landed with ink is supplied from the supply reel 12.

  Next, the voltage applied to the drive element PZ is adjusted (step S6 in FIG. 4). Specifically, the voltage applied to the drive element PZ provided for each of the plurality of nozzles N is adjusted by the control unit 31 so that the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N approaches a predetermined appropriate amount.

  FIG. 7 is a diagram illustrating the ejection characteristics of the droplet ejection head before and after correcting the variation in the ink ejection amount. In FIG. 7, the horizontal axis indicates the nozzle numbers 1 to 180 of the nozzle array NA, and the vertical axis indicates the discharge amount of the nozzle corresponding to each nozzle number. As shown in FIG. 7, when the solid line before the correction of the variation in the ink discharge amount is seen, it can be seen that the ink discharge amount tends to be relatively large at the nozzles at both ends and the central portion.

  For example, a predetermined voltage is applied to the drive element PZ corresponding to the nozzle in the region where the ink ejection amount is relatively small in the initial state (see the solid line before correction in FIG. 7). On the other hand, no voltage is applied to the drive element PZ corresponding to the nozzle in the region where the ink discharge amount is relatively large in the initial state.

  In this way, the variation in the discharge amount generated between the plurality of nozzles N is adjusted by the drive element PZ. As a result, the variation in the ink ejection amount among the plurality of nozzles N is corrected. That is, the variation in the ink discharge amount that has occurred between the plurality of nozzles N in the initial state (solid line before correction) can be approximately averaged as indicated by the solid line after correction.

  According to the droplet discharge device 1 of the present embodiment, the surface of the sheet member 15 is dried by the dry gas ejection device 34. The area measurement camera 14 captures an image on which the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N has landed. Then, based on the landing area of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N by the analysis unit 32, the distribution of the ejection amount of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N is obtained. Then, the voltage applied to the drive element PZ by the control unit 31 is adjusted so that the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N approaches a predetermined appropriate amount. That is, the control unit 31 corrects the variation in the ink discharge amount of the plurality of nozzles N. For this reason, it is possible to discharge a uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5. In addition, since the surface of the sheet member 15 is subjected to a drying process, variations in the ink landing area on the sheet member 15 are reduced. That is, the surface of the sheet member 15 has a predetermined permeability to the ink, and the permeability should be controlled uniformly. The ink landing process), the surface permeability becomes non-uniform due to some cause (for example, the penetration of moisture in the air by the ink receiving layer on the surface of the sheet member 15). This causes a problem in the measurement of the landing area. Therefore, in the droplet discharge device 1 of the present invention, the surface of the sheet member 15 is previously dried before the ink is landed to make the surface permeability uniform. This makes it possible to accurately measure the ink landing area on the sheet member 15. Further, high controllability can be obtained in the subsequent adjustment of the ink discharge amount. For this reason, it is possible to make the ink landing area uniform in all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5. Accordingly, it is possible to suppress the deterioration of the image quality by making the stripes inconspicuous. Also, a method of drying the surface of the sheet member 15 by the dry gas ejection device 34 and obtaining the distribution of the ejection amount of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N based on the ink landing area at the plurality of nozzles N is as follows. Compared with the conventional method of measuring the weight of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N, it does not require an enormous number of man-hours, so that production efficiency is excellent. Further, since the sheet member 15 on which the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N has been landed is appropriately transported, the landed area can be measured efficiently.

  According to this configuration, since the sheet member 15 has the porous ink receiving layer in which the pigment 51 is bound by the binder 52, a significantly uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5. Are ejected, and the ink landing area in all the nozzles N is remarkably made uniform. In particular, when the sheet member 15 has a porous ink receiving layer, voids in the ink receiving layer are buried by moisture absorption, and the size of the voids tends to be non-uniform. Since the permeability should be controlled uniformly, it has a remarkable effect.

  According to the droplet discharge method of the present embodiment, the surface of the sheet member 15 is dried by the first drying process, and variations in the ink landing area on the sheet member 15 are reduced. Then, the distribution of the ink ejection amount at the plurality of nozzles N is obtained by the first analysis step after the first landing step. In the first control step, the ink discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles N is adjusted to approach a predetermined appropriate amount. As a result, the variation in the ink discharge amount among the plurality of nozzles N is corrected. For this reason, it is possible to discharge a uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5 and to uniformize the ink landing area at all the nozzles N. Accordingly, it is possible to suppress the deterioration of the image quality by making the stripes inconspicuous.

  In the above-described droplet discharge method, after the first control step, the second drying treatment step for drying the surface of the sheet member 15 and the second landing treatment step for ink landing on the sheet member 15 are performed. A second analysis step of measuring the second landing area of the ink landed on the sheet member 15 after the second landing step and the second landing step, and obtaining the distribution of the ejection amount of the ink ejected from the plurality of nozzles N; The second control step of adjusting the voltage applied to the plurality of drive elements PZ so that the ink discharge amount from the plurality of nozzles N approaches a predetermined appropriate amount from the distribution may be provided at least once.

  According to this manufacturing method, after the first control process, the drying process, the landing process, the analysis process, and the control process are repeatedly performed a plurality of times, thereby causing variations in the ink discharge amount among the plurality of nozzles N and the plurality of processes. Variation in the landing area of the nozzle N is reliably adjusted. For this reason, it is possible to discharge a substantially uniform amount of ink from all the nozzles N of the droplet discharge head 5 and to make the ink landing area in all the nozzles N extremely uniform. Therefore, it is possible to make the unevenness more inconspicuous and to suppress the deterioration of the image quality.

  In the droplet discharge method, the ink that is landed in the second landing process is also arranged in an appropriate arrangement form in the same manner as in the first landing process (step S3 in FIG. 4), following the color filter layer CF. It ’s better to land. Thereby, the ejection state before correction in the plurality of nozzles N of the droplet ejection head 5 and the ejection state after correction are surely matched.

  Further, according to the color filter manufacturing method of the present invention, as described above, a uniform amount of ink is ejected from all nozzles of the droplet ejection head, and the ink landing area at all nozzles is made uniform. It is possible to produce a high-quality color filter without streaking.

  In the above-described embodiment, the case where the color filter is manufactured using the droplet discharge device 1 in which the variation in the landing area of the ink between the nozzles is adjusted has been described. However, the present invention is not limited to this. For example, the droplet discharge device 1 of the present invention can be applied not only to the manufacture of a color filter but also to a film forming process in which uniform film thickness is required and the formation of stripes becomes a problem.

DESCRIPTION OF SYMBOLS 1 ... Droplet discharge device, 5 ... Droplet discharge head, 12 ... Supply reel, 13 ... Take-up reel, 14 ... Area measurement camera (imaging device), 15 ... Sheet member, 31 ... Control unit (control means), 32 ... Analysis unit (analysis means), 34 ... Dry gas ejection device, 50a, 50b ... Ink receiving layer, 51 ... Pigment, 52 ... Binder, CF ... Color filter layer (color filter), N ... Nozzle, P ... Color filter Substrate (base material), PZ ... Drive element

Claims (3)

  1. A droplet discharge method using a droplet discharge head having a plurality of nozzles for discharging a functional liquid and a plurality of drive elements provided corresponding to the plurality of nozzles,
    A first drying process for drying the surface of the sheet member;
    A first landing step of landing the functional liquid on the sheet member after the first drying treatment step;
    A first analysis step of measuring a first landing area of the functional liquid landed on the sheet member after the first landing step and obtaining a distribution of a discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles; ,
    A first control step of adjusting a voltage to be applied to the plurality of drive elements so that the discharge amount at the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined appropriate amount from the distribution,
    The droplet discharge method , wherein the sheet member has a porous ink receiving layer in which a pigment is bound with a binder .
  2. After the first control step, a second drying treatment step for drying the surface of the sheet member;
    A second landing step of landing the functional liquid on a sheet member after the second drying treatment step;
    A second analysis step of measuring a second landing area of the functional liquid landed on the sheet member after the second landing step and obtaining a distribution of a discharge amount of the functional liquid discharged from the plurality of nozzles; ,
    2. A second control step of adjusting a voltage applied to the plurality of drive elements so that the discharge amount of the plurality of nozzles approaches a predetermined appropriate amount from the distribution, at least once. 2. The droplet discharge method according to 1.
  3. A method for producing a color filter, comprising: using the droplet discharge method according to claim 1 or 2 to form a color filter by arranging the functional liquid in a predetermined region provided on a substrate.
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JPH1177990A (en) * 1997-09-10 1999-03-23 Canon Inc Method and device for manufacture of color filter, color filter, display device, device equipped with the display device, and method for determining nozzle hole area
JP4266045B2 (en) * 1998-07-02 2009-05-20 東芝松下ディスプレイテクノロジー株式会社 Color filter panel manufacturing equipment
JP4298100B2 (en) * 1998-12-28 2009-07-15 キヤノン株式会社 Recording medium and manufacturing method thereof
JP2001311814A (en) * 2000-04-28 2001-11-09 Shin Sti Technology Kk Method for manufacturing black matrix, and drying air nozzle to be used for the method
JP2005119139A (en) * 2003-10-16 2005-05-12 Seiko Epson Corp Method and device for measuring discharge amount of functional liquid droplet jet head, method of controlling driving of functional liquid droplet jet head, liquid droplet jet device, method of manufacturing electrooptical device, electrooptical device, and electronic device
JP4159525B2 (en) * 2004-08-23 2008-10-01 株式会社石井表記 Alignment film forming method and ink jet print head ejection inspection device
JP2008197513A (en) * 2007-02-15 2008-08-28 Seiko Epson Corp Method for setting drive signal
JP4479751B2 (en) * 2007-02-22 2010-06-09 セイコーエプソン株式会社 Discharge amount adjustment method, liquid material discharge method, color filter manufacturing method, liquid crystal display device manufacturing method, and electro-optical device manufacturing method
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