3D printing has reached another milestone in innovative technology with scientists' new ability to print 3D images in glass. The German research team led by Bastian E. Rapp at 'KIT' was funded through the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research who prioritize "the development of innovative materials for industry and society."
Up until this innovation, 3D printing included capabilities like printing on ceramics, metals, and plastics. With 3D glass printing as a goal for researchers, it did not seem like a feasible feat until the development of a new method which involves mixing nanoparticles of quartz glass with a tiny amount of liquid polymer, and curing certain parts under an ultraviolet light. This method lets some points harden, while other points are liquid, allowing the maker to build the layers of the shape.
The ability to create quick, customizable, and specific glass creations will allow for breakthroughs in the field of optics. Eye wear, computers, and medical equipment could soon be created at a more efficient rate with this new innovation.