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Engineers created the first 3D printed flexible OLED display, might change the industry forever

Researchers at the University of Minnesota have created the world’s first 3D printed flexible OLED screen. This is a discovery that will allow people to print screens themselves at home instead of depending on companies that produce panels in distant factories.

The researchers used extrusion to print electrodes, interconnectors, insulation, and so on. The active layers were then stained at room temperature. In all, six layers were 3D printed to build a flexible and fully functional display.

OLED screens are usually manufactured in large, expensive and ultra-clean factories. “We wanted to see if we could make an OLED screen in our homes with a 3D printer that is unique in the world and costs as much as the Tesla Model S,” said Michael McAlpine, one of the study’s senior authors.

The 3D print screen is only 1.5 inches wide and has only 64 pixels. The University of Minnesota prototype is not something unseen, but on the contrary, researchers believe that their process can be improved and more complex displays can be made in the future.

By comparison, a 1080p screen requires more than 2 million pixels, which means they still have work to do. It should also be noted that the team used an extremely expensive printer, so it will take a long time while the process of 3D printing OLED screens can be done by anyone in their home.

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