Researchers found a way to make 3D printing look hyper-realistic



Most 3D-printed objects currently come in a variety of exciting monochromatic colors. You’ve got red, white, blue and, if you’re really lucky, a mix of two colors. And while the objects may have a great deal of detail, the surface will be bland

Now, researchers have found a way to precisely affix complex coloring to objects, making them look somewhat photo-real (and perhaps a bit creepy).

The method, developed by a pair of teams at Zhejiang University and Columbia University, is called computational hydrographic printing. Hydrographic printing is not new; mass manufacturers use it to add repeating patterns to cheaply manufactured objects. It involves a vat of water and thin, pre-printed film, which is sprayed with a softening agent. The object is lowered into water and presses against the film, which stretches to wrap itself around every contour of the object. When the object is removed, it looks as if the pattern was part of the 3D-printing process. Read more…

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