Could Computational Hydrographic Printing Be Useful To Our Industry?

May 14, 2015 by brennon

It might sound like a mouthful but over on Engadget they have recently talked about the uses of Computational Hydrographic Printing and the uses that it might have with the everyday colouring of objects that we get 3D printing. Could we see a use for this within the market of tabletop gaming too?

What Is It?

Hydrographic Printing has existed before and is used in the mass colouring of objects. You can see an example of how it works above in the video demonstration as well as with this tiger face below…

Print & Immersion

Effectively in a very simplified form it allows you to wrap an image around an object quickly and easily. There are limitations however and it’s never a clean fit because of the inaccuracies of the dipping.

Car & Face

However as they show in the video above they have used a rig and a 3D mapping tool (a Kinect from an Xbox) to help map points on the object as its dipped allowing for a more precises application and hopefully avoiding warping/stretching in the final design.

Applications For Our Industry?

When it comes to our industry however how could we implement this? Well, the immediate thought is that you could use it for mapping terrain with various images and designs without having to paint them. It’s incredibly quick from the looks of it and the results are getting more and more interesting.

Bunny

In the video they also show off more complex designs on more intricate models and so there’s always the possibility that the technique could be used on miniatures too. I don’t see this being as interesting a prospect compared to the applications for terrain but it’s certainly something to consider when we think about pre-finished products for our industry.

If you want to learn more then you can check out the published article from Zheijiang University and Columbia University HERE.

What do you think could be its uses?

"They have used a rig and a 3D mapping tool (a Kinect from an Xbox) to help map points on the object as its dipped allowing for a more precises application..."

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