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  • Writer's pictureDr. Tõnis

Fiber Optic Display

After seeing a fiber optic display project I wanted to make one. Thus, the project started. The aim of this project was to build a screen without any real plan of what to show.

Project summary

In this project I made a pixel screen using an RGB LED panel with light transferring fiber optic strands.

My responsibilities

  • Find and source a suitable fiber

  • CAD design of the display

  • 3d printing and assembly

  • Programming


Finding a suitable fiber was not too difficult. However there is a huge variety of different diameters and it took some time to decide what would be the best diameter. The fiber defines pixel size and at the same time one has to keep in mind the 3d printer limitations. Thus, I went with the 1.5mm version. The small fiber was another topic. It took several trials to find a suitable hole diameter that was not too small nor too large for the fiber. In the end I still had to redrill all the holes for better assembly.

The whole display is 3d printed and that is causing some flexibility in the system. Despite the symmetrical assembly the fiber has slightly bent the display frame. I started fiber assembly from one side and that has the most deformation. It seems that one should do it in one go and not over several days.

Another small issue are the pixels themselves. Unfortunately not all the fibers are at the same height and that affects the brightness of a pixel. Few pixels are a little lower and they are dimmer than others. The colorful fibers are mainly visible in the dark, thus the display has the best effect in the darkness.

To sum up, the display works and has very pleasing color play. Some minor mechanical design limitations could be improved if another one would be built. Nevertheless, I am happy with the result.

The display in action: Link

The Inspiration Project can be found here: Link

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