Disney’s New 3D Printer Prototype Makes Huggable Issues Out Of Material As an alternative Of Exhausting Plastic
We’ve seen tons and plenty of 3D printers over the previous few years, they usually virtually all have one factor in widespread: the objects they print are exhausting* and principally inflexible.
(* nicely, apart from this printer that prints edible objects out of mulched bananas…)
What in case you needed to print one thing delicate as an alternative? One thing you’ll be able to hug, or snuggle with, or hand to your child with out worry of them jabbing it of their eye?
Disney is on it.
Constructed by Disney’s analysis lab together with researchers from Cornell and CMU, this 3D printer isn’t like most printers we’ve come to know. It’s neither extruding melted materials (like a Makerbot) or blasting a bathtub of goo with UV mild to exactly solidify it (like a Form1). The truth is, it’s as a lot a laser cutter as it’s a 3D printer.
The machine builds the thing up layer by layer by chopping shapes out of a sheet of adhesive felt, cramming/heating every layer collectively because it goes. You recognize these 3D puzzles the place you stack a bunch of sheets to ultimately construct a bizarre, blocky model of Abe Lincoln’s head? It’s like that, however created on the fly.
When it’s finished, you get what seems like one massive block — however when you tear away the additional felt bits (left in place to help the form because it’s printed), you’re left together with your bunny/fowl/principally ineffective wrench/no matter.
Is it going to vary the 3D printing world? Nah. The decision of the print isn’t stellar and the adhesive layers don’t look sturdy sufficient in your youngsters to toss round. In contrast to Makerbot and the remaining, you in all probability gained’t see one thing like this constructed for house use any time quickly.
However that’s not the purpose — as an alternative, like a lot of what Disney builds in its unimaginable analysis labs, it’s principally meant for their very own makes use of. Assume quick, straightforward stuffed toy prototypes.
That is hardly the primary time Disney’s analysis lab has tinkered with 3D printing ideas. Take a look at this printer that may print seemingly unattainable spinning tops, for instance.