Sublimation is the method to apply a special filmed image to a final surface (ceramics, metals that have a polyester layer, synthetic textiles) using three basic ingredients: ink, heat and pressure. The sublimation ink is unique in its capacity to change from solid to gas without passing through a liquid form (as dry ice). The conversion is initiated by the heat and controlled by pressure and time.
Sublimation is the process where the color passes from the imprinted foil to the final surface (t-shirts, cups, puzzles, etc.). Sublimation works only on white surfaces. Sublimation works best on synthetic materials or on other materials pre-treated to accept sublimation inks.
Sublimated images have high resistance to washing, scratching or other frictional processes because the image is protected inside the material. The difference between sublimation and other transfer techniques that use dye or pigment inks is that sublimation guarantees 100% resistance for the applied images while other techniques don’t.
Being an image printed by digital techniques, the restrictions are reduced to the printer’s performances: