Printing Without Ink – Origin of the Xerox Machine (Jan, 1949)

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Printing Without Ink

Here’s how one man beat the high cost of printing by inventing Xerography—a new process which requires no ink, rollers or heavy presses.
CHESTER CARLSON, patent attorney, wanted to have one of his manuscripts published but the cost astonished him. It started him thinking about methods for reducing printing costs. And what’s more important, it started him experimenting.

Soon he found it essential to ask for financial heLp. The Battelle Memorial Institute of Research with the sponsorship of the Haloid Company, came to his rescue. The result? Well, it has just been announced that a revolutionary process of inkless printing has finally been developed. It’s expected to change radically most printing and publishing operations.

Named “Xerography,” the method reproduces pictures and text at a speed of 1200 feet within 45 seconds after exposure of the photographed material. It substitutes for liquid ink a fine, iron powder mixed with a dry plastic substance.
With the prospect of terrifically reduced printing costs, inventor Carlson feels he has really accomplished something. Says he might even publish a manuscript, now.

Here’s how it works. 1 & 2: Surface of coated plate is electrically charged as it passes under wires.

3: Copy is projected through lens in camera. Light releases charge, leaving electric image.

4: Negatively-charged powder sticks to positively-charged image.

5: Sheet of paper is placed over plate and receives positive charge. 6: Positively-charged paper attracts powder from plate, forming direct positive image.

7: Image heated to fuse powder into print.

4 comments
  1. Michael Patrick says: July 28, 20088:57 am

    Printing Without Ink – Origin of the Xerox Machine (Jan, 1949)-

    They forgot to also mention the simultaneous invention of the paper jam, as well as the launch of careers in copy machine repair.

  2. Eliyahu says: July 28, 200810:30 am

    “at a speed of 1200 feet within 45 seconds ” ??? What kind of a speed is that?

  3. Thundercat says: July 28, 200810:52 am

    I wonder if Chester Carlson realized that thanks to him people all over the world would soon be photocopying their butt.

  4. Benzene says: July 28, 20087:25 pm

    1200 feet per 45 seconds is 1600 feet per minute or 18.2 mph. Maybe 1200 feet is a standard size for rolls of book paper.

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