disney develops 3d-printed lighting for toys
The company\'s researchers are working on a range of technologies, including \"Light tubes\" and closed air tubes that can glow in a controlled manner.
3D printers, they say, can create objects with \"micron precision\" or they will be more complex and expensive to build.
This paved the way for the company to create new toys.
However, one expert believes that this innovation may take some time before it can become cheap enough to make products that are produced on a large scale.
A paper published by the entertainment giant Pittsburgh laboratory details the prototype that has been created, including a bug-
A figure that glows like an eye, showing different figures;
Chess pieces that display the position information on the board with lights;
And plastic blocks, which seem to show an internal explosion when light hits them.
\"We envision a future world where interactive devices can be printed instead of assembled,\" the team wrote . \".
\"In this world, devices with active elements are created as single objects, rather than shells that surround the board and individual assembled parts.
Engineers used computer software to make objects, including innovative lighting components.
They explain that creating a toy on a 3D printer allows them to create a real
It takes only a few minutes to complete the world prototype without having to wait for the factory to re-process.
This process uses liquid substances that become hard when exposed to ultraviolet rays.
The printer deposited and hardened this polymer layer by layer with a high precision equivalent to the printing resolution of 600 points per inch.
An application involves creating air bags of various lengths of thin, medium air traffic control shapes that are arranged in a shape similar to the cartoon heart in an animal --Statue of shape
When light is used to shine from below-diode (LED)
The tube looks like a lot of small lights are built into the toy and programmed to glow in sequence, like a beating heart.
Another example is to create the \"light tube\" as 3D-
Printing alternatives for optical fiber.
Engineers say these pipes can be easily formed to fit the specific form of the toy, place joints in specific places, allowing them to be connected to other light tubes.
They say it is much more difficult to do this with traditional fibers.
The Disney team used a series of such pipes to bring light from the bottom of the toy demon into the eyes.
Engineers can control which eyes are illuminated by a specific color, making the toy look like it is rolling the eye, blinking, or showing two small beating hearts.
The team also showed how to use a lot of light tubes to form a point matrix display.
By controlling which tube receives light at any time, they are able to make the text and numbers glow through the bottom of the specially constructed pieces.
They suggested that the technique could be used to show the position of the pieces and the movement suggested during the game.
The researchers acknowledge that they need to do more before the technology goes public.
For example, the optical tube will suffer too much light loss at present unless it remains short, and complications occur when creating a completely closed Hollow area.
However, the researchers seem to believe that these setbacks can be overcome, adding that future 3D printers should be able to better control reflection, light absorption and other factors to allow toy designers to add extra
But an industry observer is skeptical.
\"The toy industry will always look forward to seeing if it can use technology to enhance the \'whoa\' factor,\" Toy World magazine publisher John bowch told the BBC . \".
\"But the point is whether this can be used to make toys at the final price
Products that are commercially viable.
\"So far, a few other companies that have developed 3D printing methods have found that the resulting products are ultimately expensive and target adult collectors rather than children, resulting in results.
\"At the same time, some in the toy industry see 3D printers as a potential threat that allows users to download designs and make their own toys at home. File-
The Pirate Bay shared site has hosted a limited number of 3D file blueprints and claims that \"physical\" will be the next step in \"copying \".