Akita Epson Corporation, a subsidiary of Seiko Epson, will invest 3.5 billion yen ($A37 million) to build a new factory that will triple its production capacity of PrecisionCore printheads for inkjet printers to meet the predicted growth in demand.
Artist impression of new Akita Epson printhead factory
Construction work on the new factory on the Akita Epson lot will begin in November 2022 and is scheduled for completion in December 2023.
“Epson's printing solutions business provides products and services based on original Micro Piezo inkjet technology to customers in the office, home, commercial, and industrial markets,” said an Epson press release.
“Global demand for inkjet printers in the office and home inkjet printer markets is forecast to continue growing over the medium and long terms. The need for distributed printing that arose with COVID-19 is helping to fuel this demand, as is the strong demand for high-capacity ink tank printers in North America and other developed economies.
“The new factory will be used to manufacture and assemble inkjet printheads, the core devices used in inkjet printers. The investment plan will ensure that Epson has enough production space to meet the predicted future growth in demand. It will also enable Epson to strengthen its product line-up and expand printhead sales to third parties, with a view to increasing the supply of inkjet printers equipped with cutting-edge PrecisionCore MicroTFP printheads*.”
The plan is to construct the new factory adjacent to the existing factory. By consolidating PrecisionCore MicroTFP printhead production at Akita Epson, the company aims to maximize efficiency. Production equipment and processes will be arranged to further increase human productivity and space productivity.
“As a production site with high technological capabilities, Akita Epson works closely with other Epson R&D sites,” Epson said. “It shares the advanced production technology and know-how it gains through the production of core devices with Epson's worldwide production sites to help maximize manufacturing capabilities across the Group.
* PrecisionCore MicroTFP printheads are critical components that determine the image quality and speed of an inkjet printer. Equipped with an array of individually controlled nozzles, they are capable of ejecting 50,000 tiny ink droplets per second, with droplet sizes as small as several picolitres (a picolitre is one trillionth of a litre).