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3D printer cranks out exquisite structures smaller than dust mites and sets a new world record

by Laura Domela

March 22, 2012 at 5:56 PM

Researchers from the Vienna University of Technology have refined a 3D printing technique to make incredibly small structures at record-breaking speeds. The technique, called two-photon lithography, allows the sculpting of intricate objects with micron precision at a rate of 5 meters 

per second, which is 50,000 times faster than typical processing speeds. The team demonstrated the fabrication from CAD files of St. Stephen’s cathedral, the London Tower Bridge, and even a race car that measures about 300 micrometers long, just under the size of a dust mite barely visible to the human eye. The momentum for developing 3D printing techniques continues to build, so the pressure is on to produce complex structures at lightning fast speeds that can be commercialized for electronics, biomedicine and nanotechnology.

Here’s the fabricated intricate and detailed cathedral with resolutions at 100 nanometers next to a dust mite:

cathedral-vs-dust-mite.jpg

via Singularity Hub

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