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Olympus develop technology to produce cameras from wood

Olympus develop technology to produce cameras from wood - Olympus announces the development of a three-dimensional compression moulding process for wooden materials. The new process draws extensively on Olympus expertise in precision metal-forming technologies.

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Olympus develop technology to produce cameras from wood
Press Release:
The processed wooden material has the feel and grain pattern of natural wood, but is much harder than engineering plastics such as ABS and polycarbonate resins. Strong enough to be used to create the outer casings of electronic products, the material can enhance the aesthetic value and pleasure of ownership that those products provide. A prototype example of a camera case created using this new technology will be exhibited at the photokina 2006, being held in Cologne, Germany

Development background

The efficiency, convenience, and lower costs associated with mass production technologies have inundated us in a sea of products. But at the same time, there has been a decline in the aesthetic satisfaction that many of those products provide. So we stepped back to consider what we could do to increase the aesthetic satisfaction that products provide.

One answer was to use wood – the natural colour, patina, and grain of which are almost universally appreciated as things of beauty. We therefore focused on the idea of using a three-dimensional compression moulding process to produce a wood-based material thin enough and hard enough to be used to make the casings for electronic products.

With the successful development of this process, it is our hope that consumers will enjoy greater aesthetic satisfaction and a sense of personal attachment with future products that are made from this new wood material.

Details of the new technology
Using the newly-developed three-dimensional compression moulding process, the specific gravity of a piece of cypress wood was increased from approximately 0.4~0.5 to more than 1 (approximately 2.5x compression). The resulting material is thin enough to be used as a casing material for electronic products, yet is much harder than the ABS and polycarbonate resin-based engineering plastics that are normally used to produce such casings.

It is this special three-dimensional compression moulding technology that enables the material to be used to make electronic product casings.

Proprietary Olympus moulding technologies developed for the production of digital camera, microscope, and endoscope lenses are used to form the wood material into the desired shape. The application of these high-precision moulding technologies to wood compression moulding results in an attractive natural patina that significantly reduces the need to post-process the material.

An example of a camera case created using this new technology will be exhibited at the Olympus stand during photokina 2006 in Cologne, Germany. This example is being shown purely as a demonstration of the technology’s possible future potential, and is not meant to suggest that there are specific plans to introduce such a product in any market.
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User_Removed 13 17.9k 8 Norway
Does this mean that metal-framed Pro bodies are now going to become 'Eco-Friendly'?

Newtman 11 2 5
Depending on the wood used (and presumably they will use additional woods to cypress) this could actually be very far from eco-friendly, given that the world's hardwood forests are disappearing rapidly already.
RipleyExile 14 1.6k 17 England
Is this Olympus' answer to Canikon's fast development cycle? They carry on at the same speed development wise, but you have to buy a new camera sooner as the old one has rotted away. Would lend a new dimension to fungi shots though. Smile
Mayfly 12 485 2 United Kingdom
LOL ! well at least if it's not comfortable in the hand you can reach for the chisel and sandpaper... Tongue
I bought a camera like this a few years ago and it wooden work Smile

ha ha ha ha

RipleyExile 14 1.6k 17 England
Varnish it and hey presto, a weather sealed compact camera! Grin
If it's made of wood, maybe it'll float? Smile
I just bought a wooden camera - cost me an arm and a leg as it had been made by a chum of Fox Talbot. What goes around comes around eh?

Anyone know how to make a pin hole digital camera...
Careful with that camera! Those things don't grow on trees, you know! Umm....well....on the other hand...
bye bye rainforest !
Glynn 11 1.2k 1 United Kingdom
Wood Worm !!!!!
I think most of shots will be to grainy!!!

Quote:Anyone know how to make a pin hole digital camera...

Keith - Try here


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