Glossary Of Terms

The SGIA Glossary of Terms serves as an excellent industry terminology resource. It is the language by which we all communicate, without it universal understanding would be impossible. Language and our ideas about how it is interpreted change rapidly. SGIA is aware of this and continues its effort to keep our constituents well informed about changes to the increasingly complex industry terminology. The definitions are for general reference only. Usage may vary between companies, individuals, or national and country customs. The information presented is as accurate as the authors and editors can ascertain and SGIA assumes no responsibility for the use of information presented herein.


  • Deformation
    A change of shape through stress.
  • Degauss
    Process of eliminating magnetism, such as with a color monitor face plate, to eliminate distortion.
  • Degrease
    The act of removing oil or grease film from metal parts before printing or from screen mesh prior to stencil application.
  • Degree of cure
    In UV curable coatings, it is generally inversely related to the level of free monomer.
  • Dehaze
    The removal of ghost images from a reclaimed screen.
  • Dehydration
    The loss of water from a sheet of paper from exposure to high-temperature, low-humidity air, or both.
  • Delamination
    The separation of material constructed in layers in a direction approximately parallel to the surface.
  • Deliquescent
    Refer to hygroscopic.
  • Delta (D)
    Used to indicate deviation or difference; a change.
  • Delta E*, Delta e*
    The total color difference computed with a color difference equation. It is generally calculated as the square root of the sum of the squares of the chromaticity difference, Delta C*, and the lightness difference, Delta L*.
  • Deltascope
    Device used to measure thickness, typically with eddy currents.
  • Denier
    A unit of fineness for synthetic filaments and yarns based on a standard of 50 milligrams per 450 meters of yarn or one yarn/filament weighing one gram per 9000 meters. (The lower the denier, the finer the yarn).
  • Densitometer
    An instrument for measuring the optical density of a photographic image or color in color printing.
  • Density
    (1) A measurement of the opacity of an area in an image.); (2) The density of a fiber with its weight expressed in grams per cubic centimeter; (3) The mass of any unit volume of a material; (4) A measure of reflectance or transmittance equal to log 10 1/reflectance of log 10 or 1/transmittance; (5) The ratio of a substance mass to its volume at a given temperature and pressure; also refer to color density.
  • Density range (density scale)
    The difference between the highest density and the lowest density in a negative, transparency, photographic print, or printed press sheet; determines the amount of light that will pass through a transparency or reflect from a print.
  • Densometer
    An instrument for measuring the time required for a volume of air to pass through a given area of paper; a mill instrument used for measuring the porosity of paper.
  • Deposit of ink (deposition)
    The ink imprint left on the substrate by the act of screen printing.
  • Depth of field
    The distance from a point between the camera lens and subject or copy to a point behind the subject, between which point the foreground, subject, and background are in focus when a lens is focused on subject copy.
  • Depth of focus
    The distance that a lens can be moved toward or away from subject or copy when focused, without throwing the subject or copy out of focus.
  • Dermatitis
    A skin condition or inflammation produced by direct contact with certain chemicals.
  • Descender
    The portion of a lower case character that extends below the baseline, such as in g, j, or p.
  • Descreening
    In scanning, the method of applying a controlled blur to erase discreet components of a halftone image and make it appear more like a continuous-tone image. This process will minimize effects of causing moiré patterns if the image is re-screened.
  • Desiccated
    A condition referring to a substance where some or all of the moisture has been removed; to dry or dehydrate.
  • Design of experiments (DOE)
    A methodology for designing experiments to test the effect of multiple process parameters on a given process’s outcome.
  • Detackifier
    An additive used to reduce tackiness in a plastisol ink, thereby improving ink flow and shear.