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A High-Resolution Laser Thermal Lenticular Printer

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Lenticular printing is a method of generating 3-D, or moving, images by placing multiple image frames behind a series of cylindrical lenses. Lenticular images have been around for decades as exemplified by the kids give-away cards, which typically contain two still images.

In this paper, we present a novel method for generating lenticular images based on the laser thermal process. A highpower infrared multimode laser is used to thermally transfer dyes from three donor sheets (cyan, magenta, and yellow) to a lenticular card. The beam is oriented and aligned to the cylindrical lenses to allow a minimum spot size in the cross lens direction. The printing resolution is asymmetric at approximately 2500 by 300 dpi. This method allows the printing of 10 micron continuous tone lines, which yields 34 images behind a 75 lenses per inch substrate. Printing occurs in alignment with the lenticules by premeasurement, rotational alignment, and adjustment of relevant parameters.

The printed card is then thermally laminated with either a transparent or reflective backing, which acts as a receiver and protection. The current printer allows individual cards to be printed in less than 5 minutes. Samples will be presented, which show the high-quality motion and stills possible by this process.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2000-01-01

More about this publication?
  • For more than 25 years, NIP has been the leading forum for discussion of advances and new directions in non-impact and digital printing technologies. A comprehensive, industry-wide conference, this meeting includes all aspects of the hardware, materials, software, images, and applications associated with digital printing systems, including drop-on-demand ink jet, wide format ink jet, desktop and continuous ink jet, toner-based electrophotographic printers, production digital printing systems, and thermal printing systems, as well as the engineering capability, optimization, and science involved in these fields.

    Since 2005, NIP has been held in conjunction with the Digital Fabrication Conference.

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