This glossary of printing terms was created by people working in today's printing industry and is brought to you by MirPrint.com. It has been revised and edited and we have rewritten some technical descriptions in every day language to help the non technical person. Any suggestions that you may have on how we can improve this glossary will be carefully considered. Please send your comments and any new definitions to us at MirPrint.com.
Universal Copyright Convention (UCC)
Optical unsharp masking is performed during scanning utilizing two types of apertures: the small, primary signal aperture, which captures the individual red, green, and blue image signals, and a larger unsharp masking aperture, which captures a larger amount of the same signal. The two signals are combined to create a single exaggerated signal which causes an enhancement where image edges occur.
Digital unsharp masking utilizes the application software to analyze each set of adjacent pixels of a digital image, locate where the edges occur, and adjust the tonal values of the pixels on either side of the edge in opposite directions, increasing the contrast along the edge. Some advanced programs allow the user to specify the number of pixels to modify, allowing greater or lesser degrees of unsharp masking.
Unlike photographic USM, neither the optical nor the digital USM techniques can be used to color correct the image, and actually neither of them technically use "unsharp masks."
The most common configuration of UV curing equipment is a mercury vapor lamp. Within a quartz glass tube containing charged mercury, energy is added, and the mercury is vaporized and ionized. As a result of the vaporization and ionization, the high-energy free-for-all of mercury atoms, ions, and free electrons results in excited states of many of the mercury atoms and ions. As they settle back down to their ground state, radiation is emitted. By controlling the pressure that exists in the lamp, the wavelength of the radiation that is emitted can be somewhat accurately controlled, the goal being of course to ensure that much of the radiation that is emitted falls in the ultraviolet portion of the spectrum, and at wavelengths that will be effective for ink curing. UV radiation with wavelengths of 365:366 nanometers provides the proper amount of penetration into the wet ink film to effect drying. (See Photo-Reactive Vehicle.) A newer variation of radiation curing inks, Electron Beam (EB) Curing Inks, have some advantages over UV curing inks, but although the formulation of the inks is less expensive, the EB curing equipment is more expensive.