Manufacturing & Prototyping
Process 3D-Prints Highly Detailed Objects in Under 30 Seconds
Researchers at EPFL introduce a new method for 3D-printing tiny, detailed soft objects. The system is currently capable of making two-centimeter structures with a precision of 80 micrometers. The process, called high-resolution tomographic volumetric additive manufacturing, takes less than 30 seconds from beginning to end. The printing process works by sending a laser through a translucent gel, either a biological gel or liquid plastic. The laser then hardens the liquid via polymerization. Depending on what object is being created, algorithms are used to calculate exactly how and where to aim the laser beams. The EPFL team has published the findings in Nature Communications , and has set up a spin-off company, Readily3D , to further develop and market the system.