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.


  • D-65
    CIE standard illuminate that represents a color temperature of 6504ºK, the color temperature that is most widely used in graphic art color-viewing booths.
  • Dacron
    A trademark term for synthetic polyester textile fiber.
  • Dam
     A barrier placed on the squeegee side of the screen to hold the print ink in a confined area.
  • Damar (dammar)
    A fossil resin used as an ingredient in screen printing varnishes and lacquers.
  • Dandy roll
    A wire cylinder in papermaking that creates the watermark, texture, or special effect on a sheet.
  • Danner process
    A mechanical process for continuously drawing glass tubing from a rotating mandrel.
  • Dark reaction
    (1) The forming of a gel like substance, premature polymerization of UV ink without being exposed to a UV light source; (2) A slow chemical change that occurs in light sensitive emulsion or coating when the material is stored.
  • Dark spot
    A concentration of pigment in one spot that can be caused by a depression in the printed substrate material.
  • Darkfield
    An illumination technique that lights the specimen surface from an oblique angle to highlight surface problems.
  • Darkroom
    A room where actinic rays of light have been excluded used for manufacturing, handling, and developing light sensitive materials.
  • Data processing
    The manipulation, recording and handling of data by means of electronic equipment.
  • Day / Night Backlit
    Day / Night Backlit Occasionally, you may need to create a backlit image that will be viewed face-lit with natural light in the daytime, and also at night when the image is illuminated from behind. The problem is that a print that looks good when backlit needs to have a heavy ink load, in order to compensate for the intensity of the lights in the display box. But that same print will look terrible in a front-lit application. You can produce a sandwich with two identical prints, which are sometimes separated by a thin translucent spacer sheet. · Print the graphic twice using non-backlit print density with a thin translucent white ink laydown between the two print layers. · When the box is lit, the light shines through all layers, giving it the added density that backlighting requires. · Use a good light table when mounting the three layers. Having an exact match of the two prints is crucial. If you are using a flatbed UV printer, this can be accomplished by printing the image followed by a white ink flood coat, then reprinting the image again. This gives added density for the display light while still allowing a good image density during daylight hours.
    [[{"fid":"901","view_mode":"medium","fields":{"format":"medium","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false},"type":"media","field_deltas":{"1":{"format":"medium","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":false,"field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":false}},"attributes":{"class":"file-medium media-element","data-delta":"1"}}]] The white layer can be a separation sheet or a layer of white ink.
  • Daylight camera
    A self-contained graphic art camera that does not have to be operated in a darkroom.
  • Daylight fluorescence
    The phenomena of increased color brilliance where the wavelengths of other colors in the spectrum converge.
  • Daylight illuminants CIE
    Series of spectral power distribution curves based on measurements of natural daylight and recommended by the CIE in 1965. Values are defined for the wavelength region 300 to 830 nm.
  • DC
    Acronym for direct current; refer to current, direct.
  • DCS (Desktop Color Separation)
    Computer file format including four EPS files for CMYK; a graphics file appropriate to the operating platform for screen display.
  • Dead finish
    A smooth non-glare finish.
  • Dead front
    Cosmetic feature of a graphic overlay where the display is visible only when backlit.
  • Dead match
    An exact matching of a mixed color with a sample or previously match batch.
  • Dead stretch
    The net increase in length after a plastic material has been elongated without breaking, and allowed to relax.
  • Dead white
    A neutral white without any visible tint.
  • Dealer's privilege
    A two-sided p.o.p. unit which carries an advertisement on one side and a message from the dealer to his customers on the reverse.
  • Debossing
    A technique for impressing a design or texture into a material.
  • Debug
    (1) Testing and/or correcting errors; (2) to bring any newly installed unit of equipment up to operating mode dependability.