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3D-printed prototype for bionic eye

Written by David

September 11, 2018

A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota have fully 3D printed an array of light receptors on a hemispherical surface, a significant step toward creating a bionic eye that could someday help blind people see or sighted people see better. “Bionic eyes are usually thought of as science fiction, but now we are closer than ever using a multimaterial 3D printer,” said Michael McAlpine, a co-author of the study and University of Minnesota Benjamin Mayhugh Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering. Researchers started with a hemispherical glass dome to show how they could overcome the challenge of printing electronics on a curved surface. Using their custom-built 3D printer, they started with a base ink of silver particles. The dispensed ink stayed in place and dried uniformly instead of running down the curved surface. The researchers then used semiconducting polymer materials to print photodiodes, which convert light into electricity. […]

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