Device can transform your smartphone into 3D printer

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New York, March 25 (IANS) A US-based company has designed a portable device that lets you turn any smartphone into a 3D printer using the light from the touchscreen to process your plastic creations, a media report said.

The gadget called OLO is designed to be simple to understand and operate, and is battery-operated and fully portable, weighing just 780 grams, ScienceAlert reported citing Kickstarter, the company which helped develop the creative device.

The device consists of three parts: A reservoir, which holds 400 cubic cm of printing volume; 100-gram bottles of coloured photopolymer resin to build your objects with; and a mechanised lid, under which the build plate and control electronics are tightly arranged.

First, you have to load a schematic of your object into the OLO mobile app (available for iOS, Android, and Windows) and then fit your smartphone into the base under the reservoir. A piece of polarised glass is installed into the base, which your phone’s touchscreen will be facing when set in place.

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Once you place the lid on top and the printer starts going, the app makes your phone’s screen light up with a specific pattern. The polarised glass then takes all this light (which shines outwardly to give your phone a wider viewing angle) and redirects it so that all the photons are travelling straight upward.

So as your phone’s screen beams light up into the reservoir, the directed light causes a layer of resin to harden onto the build plate, which slowly moves upward as each new layer is created.

The gadget is priced at $99 and its first shipments are expected to start in September.

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