Research to create perfectly functioning eyes 'Bionic eye' with 3D printers

A research team at the University of Minnesota succeeded in placing the complete photoreceptor on the hemisphere with 3D print for the first time in the world. This technique is an important step towards making " bionic eye " leading to restoring a blind person to a visible state and restoring vision of a bad person.

Researchers 3D print prototype for 'bionic eye' - ScienceDaily

The technology of 3D printing of photoreceptors on a hemispherical surface by the research team of the University of Minnesota was presented on Advanced Materials, a scientific journal of materials science. Michael McAlpine, who participated in the study said, "Bionic eyes have been thought to be among science fiction, but now we are coming close to that by using 3D printers" I commented.

The research team worked on is "to print electronic devices on hemispherical glass surfaces 3D". Using a proprietary 3D printer, the research team used ink based on silver particles, the ink stayed in place without flowing through the curved surface and succeeded in uniformly drying. The research team uses semiconducting polymer materials to print photodiodes that convert light to electricity and these printing processes take about an hour.

According to Mr. McAlpine, the surprising part of the technology developed by the research team is that the efficiency of converting light into electricity was 25% as much as the semiconductor produced entirely by 3D printing alone. McAlpine said, "Although we have a long way to be able to reliably print active electronic equipment, semiconductors that we succeeded in 3D printing are potentially comparable to the efficiency of semiconductor devices manufactured at microfabrication facilities We are beginning to show the possibilities. "We advocate that with the evolution of 3D printing technology, it is becoming possible to create products equivalent to semiconductors manufactured with normal equipment.

The research team of Mr. McAlpine and others is known by integrating elements such as 3D print, electronics and biology into one platform. Several years ago, I succeeded in 3D printing of bionic ears and attracted worldwide attention. After that, the research team made artificial organs made with 3D printers that can be used for surgical operations, and bionic skins that function as electronic fabrics.

3D printer technology capable of printing electronic circuits on the skin emerged, enabling soldier reinforcement on the battlefield - GIGAZINE

Mr. McAlpine and colleagues cite "to create prototypes with more efficient photoreceptors" as the next step of research. In addition, it seems that research will continue on a method of 3D printing photoreceptor on a soft hemispherical material that can be transplanted to actual eyes.

in Science, Posted by logu_ii