3D Printing with Light has Finally Happened!
What if you could just print light on whatever you wanted? We’re watching 3D printing make progress in nearly every arena, so using it for creating one of the most basic needs we have on a daily basis seems only logical.
We’ve long been using creations of light based on inventions from historical geniuses and technological giants. Today though, as 3D printing advances, you will be headed in the direction of printing your own lighting with the help of US-based Rohinni and their new product, Lightpaper.
While we aren’t quite ready to unscrew all the lightbulbs in the office and throw them out, the idea of replacing them eventually with thin sheets of 3D printed light is a stunning consideration.
With 3D printing being conducive to embedding a multitude of different technologies and electronics, 3D printing with light should prove to offer new innovation and flexibility for manufacturers. While Rohinni does have mild competition in the area, they do have one completely unique factor: Their product is razor thin. And flexible. And 3D printable.
According to Rohinni, the emergence of printable light is on par with 3D printing in terms of new possibilities and application potential. With a number of different mindblowing and innovative methods used to merge technologies with 3D printing and electronics, this form of lighting, which can be produced rapidly and affordably, could offer use and advancement in various applications for consumer products, and specialized areas such as automotive, for headlights.
They are the only company working to 3D print paper using an innovative method combining ink and tiny LEDs which are printed out on a conductive layer and then sandwiched between two other layers, lit up with LED current.
Light goes hand in hand with technology, and often creates that wow factor because, quite simply, it catches the eye. Rohinni is working to spotlight their technology in a bid to gain the attention of industry movers and shakers who would benefit from its applications.
OLED (organic light emitting diodes) technology is a competing force for this product, in their use of LED technology in a series of thin, light emitting films, most commonly used to power televisions these days. But Rohinni’s eventual mainstream direction will be for backlighting for gadgets and everyday objects.
With the goal for Lightpaper to be available to the hobbyist market eventually, 2015 is the target date to bring the 3D printed light source to the commercial and industrial marketplace. They are currently still working to streamline and perfect the product.
Is this something you have thought about that would work with the technology of 3D printing? What do you think this will be useful for in particular? Tell us your thoughts in the World’s Thinnest Light forum over at 3DPB.com.