The technology of 3D printing in the literal sense of the word shines with new faces. Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a method called ColarFab. Its essence lies in the fact that the objects printed with it can change color.
The secret lies in special CSAIL inks, in which the basic (photochromic) dyes easily adapt to light: under the influence of ultraviolet radiation, objects “bloom”, and with ordinary visible light become transparent.
To run ColorFab, you must first download the digital 3D model to the interface, and then select the color palette. The transforming parts of the object have pixel design, which makes it possible to choose which pixels to activate (change color) or deactivate, that is, to make them transparent.
During the experiments, switching from mode to mode (from color to color) occurred for 23 minutes, but, as scientists assure, this process can be accelerated with the help of more powerful light sources and the addition of more easily adaptable dyes. In addition, the team is working on creating a design that creates additional shades.
Once the method has been improved, scientists intend to adapt it to create future fabrics that can change their color. They also hope that, thanks to ColorFab, the amount of production waste will decrease.