Dye sublimation is a fairly new technology that diffuses dye into specially treated paper. The dye is delivered in the form of a ribbon with four panels (cyan, magenta, yellow, and clear UV sealer). The dyes in the ribbon are connected into a diffused gas when heat is applied via the print head. The dye is then absorbed by a social layer on the paper. The print head heats to varying temperatures, which creates different shades of color (256 levels of each color for a total of 16.77 million true colors). The last pass on the print uses the clear coat to seal the image onto the paper to protect it against UV light, fingerprints, and water.
There is no smudging, running, or blotching because prints are dry immediately upon leaving the printer. All this happens at a rate far faster than other types of printing technologies.