3D printing on the macroscale is a huge trend worldwide. Ultimately, one would like to 3D print anything, including complete functional devices. Apart from boosting printing speed and pushing spatial resolution to the nanometer scale, 3D printing of many different materials poses a major challenge. In 2D graphical printers, thousands of different colors can be printed from just three color cartridges. By analogy, future 3D printers may print thousands of effective (meta-)materials from just a few materials cartridges. These metamaterials should not only be tailored in terms of their optical properties, but also electrical, magnetic, thermodynamic, mechanical, and bio-chemical.
Martin Wegener, "3D laser lithography: Quo vadis? (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10115, Advanced Fabrication Technologies for Micro/Nano Optics and Photonics X, 101150G (Presented at SPIE OPTO: January 30, 2017; Published: 28 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2249732.5395719072001.
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