The use of submicron structures for structural coloration of surfaces has broad applications for color filters, projection displays, virtual reality, and anti-counterfeiting. Currently, structural color images lack high resolution due to low manufacturing accuracy. In this study, the axial-feed fly cutting (AFC) method is proposed to fabricate submicron grooves for the diffraction of visible light to create structural color images. We establish the relationship between the color information in the pixels of the original image and the parameters of the array units corresponding to the pixels. An algorithm to determine groove spacing and the tool path is established, and array units with the desired groove spacing are machined to reproduce the structural color images. The submicron grooves fabricated by AFC have high quality and good consistency. Due to the excellent diffraction performance of the machined grooves, images with high saturation and resolution can be reproduced. It is verified that images with various colors can be efficiently fabricated using the proposed method and algorithm.
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