2.5D printing technology simulates wood, leather and fabrics

The vast majority of residents of developed countries of the world are familiar with the term "3D printing". So what does 2.5D printing mean then? At the international exhibition of advanced technologies Ceatec Japan, the Japanese company Casio presented the Mofrel printing technology and the printer based on it.

This technology allows you to give a different texture to specially prepared surfaces. At the end of the job, the printer applies ink in 16 million colors.

The target audience of the new printer is designers. Mofrel technology will enable them to simulate the textures of fabrics, woods, stones and ceramics on special “digital sheets”. Outwardly, they look like ordinary sheets of paper, but they contain a layer of micropowder containing hydrocarbon and acrylonitrile.

The heat of the printer expands the sheet, changing the external texture to the pattern desired by the designer, after which the heat source is turned off, and the pattern remains. To better control the formation of texture, the pattern is first printed on the surface of the sheet in the form of carbon microfilm. Then, carbon particles under the influence of infrared radiation focus the heat on the desired areas of the powder microlayer. The whole process takes 3 to 5 minutes.

Casio hopes that 2.5D printing technology will be in demand by smartphone manufacturers for applying unusual patterns with different textures to cases. It is also possible that in the next two years there will be a version available to regular consumers. The cost of the industrial Casio 2.5D printer presented at the exhibition is $ 44, 000.