Disney researchers use 3D printing to create simple displays and sensors

3D printed optics (Disney Research)

A group of engineers at Disney Research in Pittsburgh has demonstrated a range of new 3D printing techniques, allowing for the integration of elements such as displays and sensors into cheap, printed objects. The new approach takes advantage of recent developments in the types of materials that can be employed in 3D printing, focusing in particular on “high resolution transparent plastics with similar optical properties to plexiglas.”

The key is the simplicity and cheapness of the manufacturing process

In the example pictured above, a set of “light pipes” embedded in the chess piece maps to a projector on the board, allowing the king to display its current position. Compared to the possibilities of a conventional LCD, the demonstration…

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