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Playboy Centerfold Photo Shrunk to Width of Human Hair

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Lena Soderberg

The image of Lena Soderberg is often used to test printing techniques thanks to its mix of textures, shading, and detail.

Credit: Nature

The Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (A*STAR) has printed a color photo measuring just 50 micrometers across.

The photo is a crop of the portrait of Lena Soderberg, a Swedish supermodel, who originally appeared in a 1972 issue of Playboy, and is commonly used for testing printing techniques. The A*STAR researchers developed a device that can produce color images of up to 100,000 dots per inch, a method that could be used to print tiny watermarks or secret messages for security purposes.

"Our color-mapping strategy produces images with both sharp color changes and fine tonal variations, is amenable to large-volume color printing … and could be useful in making micro-images for security," the researchers say.

To develop the image, the researchers used tiny silver and gold particles which, when arranged in a certain manner, produce color. "Instead of taking normal dyes and using conventional printing, they're making colors out of one material by adjusting nanostructure in a lithographic [a technique to create patterns] experiment," says Northwestern University professor Chad Mirkin.

From BBC News 
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Abstracts Copyright © 2012 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA 


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