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  • Writer's pictureTerry Clayton

Micron Size Toys?

Updated: Feb 10, 2023

Smaller than a human hair, the team at Leiden University can create this tugboat or other complex designs under 100 microns. Their research is really focused on creating “micro swimmers" with complex shapes to study motion in biological systems. But I love the boat! You can read about their work here.

The tech they employ is called two-photon polymerization (2PP). Here is an illustration of how 2PP works. Zabidi et al. provides an overview of the technology in Additive Manufacturing.

2PP scheme

The liquid precursor is often an acrylate resin plus photoinitiator. However, other materials are being worked on which are safe for biological systems. Though in early stages, perhaps one day we may truly see nanobots that can fight disease or ?????? #2PP #additivemanufacturing #3DPrinting

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