Microcontrollers bring pinpoint accuracy to desktop 3D printers and scanners

DLP Pico controllers from Texas Instruments deliver advanced light control capabilities in smaller form factors for mass-market 3D scanners and 3D printers. The DLPC347x controllers offer the micron-to-sub-millimeter resolution typically found in high-performance, industrial-grade applications in a smaller form factor for desktop 3D printers and portable 3D scanners, announces the company.   

Developers can pair the DLPC3470, DLPC3478 or DLPC3479 controller with one of four existing DLP Pico digital micromirror devices (DMDs) to design battery-powered and handheld designs. The high resolution and fast switching speed of the DMDs and new controllers enable 3D printing speeds five times faster than existing technologies, claims TI. With precision pattern control in a smaller form factor, developers can capture the fine details of an object with micron-level accuracy, which bring benefits to applications such as dental scanning, 3D modelling and 3D vision for robotics.

The DLP Pico display technology includes high-speed, high-resolution precision light control that was previously only found in the industrial-grade DLP4500 to DLP9000 chipsets. These capabilities allows optical module manufacturers and developers to create smaller 3D printing and 3D scanning designs with higher precision, says TI.

By pairing one of the new controllers with a DLP2010 (480p), DLP2010NIR (480p), DLP3010 (720p) or DLP4710 (1080p) DMD, ranging in size from 0.2 to 0.47-inch diagonal (or 5.0 or 12mm diagonal), developers can create customised solutions by combining the controllers and DMDs that best fit the application and integrate low-power 3D scanners and 3D printers.

The chipsets are optimised for precision, speed and wavelength. Micron-level accuracy captures the fine details of a 3D-printed object and enables smooth, high-quality 3D-printed objects with pattern and pixel control across 405 nanometre ultraviolet (UV), visible and near-infrared (NIR) light up to 2,500 nanometre.

Pre-production samples of the DLPC3470, DLPC3478 and DLPC3479 controllers are available to order. Production samples of the DLPC3470 and DLPC3478 controllers will be available in Q3 2018, and the DLPC3479 controller will be available in Q1 2019.


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