MIT Multifab 3D Printer Prints 10 Different Materials At A Time

Posted: Aug 25 2015, 4:29am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 25 2015, 4:40am CDT, in News | Latest Science News

MIT Multifab 3D Printer Prints 10 Different Materials at a Time
Platform is first to use machine vision to self-correct and embed components, saving users money, time and energy. Credit: CSAIL

A Multifab 3D Printer is a fantastic piece of equipment. That is because it employs 10 different materials at a time.

It is said that 3D printing is okay. That is as long as you use only a single material to build the fantasy-turned-reality of your dreams. And of course it may be a little rickety to begin with. That is you have to try again and again before you get a decent result.

Yet the required technology is evolving with the times. Now different materials may be used simultaneously to create any object of desire. And the good thing is that no assembly is needed whatsoever.

The price is reliable and does not cause a dent in your wallet. The rise of multi-material 3D printers is just the beginning of a journey that will never end. There might even come days when 3D printers will create whole environments and habitats.

It may seem unlikely but the remote possibility of creating life via 3D printers is in the cards as well. That will be the day. Meanwhile, coming back to the limitations of the present times. The progress made so far is still very significant.

Most current 3D printers use at maximum 3 materials. And they cost somewhere in the region of $250,000 per unit. However, all that is about to change. This week at MIT an experiment proved a whole lot more.

This was that faster, cost-efficient and handy 3D printers can be a reality. The blueprints are already here. All that is needed is their implementation in real life. The new Multifab 3D Printer will use 10 different cartridges of materials at a single time.

Thereby it will increase the overall ergonomics of the equation. The new 3D printer will deliver a resolution of 40 microns. That is up to half the width of a single strand of human hair. Furthermore, 3D scanning techniques will also get employed in the process.

The Multifab can improve itself via a feedback loop. Errors are corrected and thus everything goes smooth as silk. It can even imbed electronic components into a completed product during its making. This is a novel application of 3D printing.

Manufacturing will never be the same after Multifab. It will revolutionize the very art of making something. That can range from a trophy to an electric toy. The components cost a total of $7000 which is dirt cheap.

3D printers use various methods of construction. They employ syringes and droplets of polymers sprayed onto a central axis. These wonder-works are the stuff that dreams are made of.

“The platform opens up new possibilities for manufacturing, giving researchers and hobbyists alike the power to create objects that have previously been difficult or even impossible to print.”says Javier Ramos, a research engineer at CSAIL who co-authored the paper with members of professor Wojciech Matusik’s Computational Fabrication Group.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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