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Labeling Glossary: Thermal Transfer

The term "Thermal Transfer" refers to the movement of ink into a substrate through means of heat. Another term would be "heat transfer." The "Ink," in this case, is usually coated onto a roll of thermal transfer ribbon, or thin plastic sheet. The sheet passes over a thermal print head, which has a number of pixels that are controlled by a computer. They heat at just the right time to transfer the ink into the substrate, usually a vinyl, polyester, or paper. This process in its entirety is known as a "thermal transfer."

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