Glossary Of Terms

The PRINTING United Alliance 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. PRINTING United Alliance 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 PRINTING United Alliance assumes no responsibility for the use of information presented herein.


  • Non-porous surfaces
    Surfaces such as glass, ceramic, or metal where the tendency of the ink to absorb slightly or bond with an application is absent.
  • Non-rain lap
    The various sheets of an outdoor poster laid-out and printed so that when posted, the bottom edge of the top sheets will be overlapped by the top edge of the bottom sheets.
  • Non-reflective ink
    A black ink used to form the optical characters that are read by a scanner or OCR device.
  • Non-reproducible color
    Refers to certain colors that cannot be exactly reproduced by process printing especially fluorescent colors.
  • Non-rigid plastic
    A plastic material with an apparent modulus of elasticity of not more than 50,000 psi at 25°C (77°F) under specified test conditions.
  • Non-scratch inks
    Inks which have high or total abrasion resistance when dry or cured.
  • Nontactile
    Switch constructed without snap action; switch with tactile ratio of zero.
  • Nonvolatile
    Any substance that will not evaporate at ordinary or room temperature.
  • Non-volatile matter
    The ingredients of an ink or coating composition which, after drying, are left behind on the material.
  • Nonwetting
    Failure of an ink to coat evenly on a substrate to which it is applied.
  • Non-woven material
    A material that is matted, entangled with a binder forming an interlocking web of fibers; fabrics that are formed instead of woven or knitted.
  • Non-yellowing adhesive
    Acrylic-based adhesive that does not yellow with age.
  • Normal (axial) stress
    The force per unit area on a given plane within a body.
  • Normalize
    To shift the readings representing a quantity to within a specified range on an instrument.
  • North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS)
    Replaced the US Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), developed joinly by the United States, Canada, and Mexico to provide comparability in statistics about business activities across North America.
  • Notch
    Small serration or mark along the edge of film that are used for identifying and positioning.
  • Nozzle
    An orifice through which jets of ink are ejected to form an image in ink jet printing.
  • NPDES permit (US)
    National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued by the US EPA or an approved state program to point sources which discharge process wastewater to public waters.
  • NR
    Acceptable acronym for natural rubber.
  • Nuance
    A subtle graduation.
  • Nuclear radiation resistance
    The ability of a material to withstand nuclear radiation and still perform its designated function.
  • Number of squares
    A ratio, rather than a physical measurement, of width to length used in determining resistance value by formula of a printed resistor.
  • Numbering
    Printing characters in a consecutive order.
  • Nylon dyeing
    A dye process using acid dye to color garments made of nylon.
  • Nylon monofilament
    (1) A single strand or thread of nylon of even diameter and smooth surface; (2) generally, the term indicates nylon screen printing mesh.