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Water-Based Digital Fabrication

Posted: 14.05.2018 at 07:56 | Comments: 0

Water-based Digital Fabrication Platform : Robotic Additive Manufacturing of Lightweight, Biodegradable and Materially Heterogeneous Structures Across Scales. Inspired by aqueous material formation the Water-based Digital Fabrication Platform offers a new perspective on water-based manufacturing combining an age-old crustacean-derived material with robotic fabrication and synthetic biology to form constructs that utilize graded material properties for hydration-guided self-assembly. A robotically controlled multi-chamber extrusion system is designed to deposit biodegradable composites with functional, mechanical and optical gradients across length scales. A seamless computational workflow is implemented for the design and direct digital fabrication of multi-material and multi-scale structured objects. The workflow encodes for, and integrates, domain-specific meta-data relating to local, regional and global feature resolution of heterogeneous material organizations. Geometrically diverse constructs associating shape-informing variable flow rates and material properties to mesh-free geometric primitives are deposited. The structures are made of a single material system derived from chitin – the most abundant renewable polymer in the ocean, and the second most abundant polymer on the planet. Derived from the ocean, shaped by water and augmented by photosynthetic marine bacteria these structures represent the transformation of a marine arthropod’s shell into a tree-like chitosan made skin that will ultimately convert sunlight into biofuel. The platform and its products demonstrate the Material Ecology approach to shape and property formation by design. It is a realization of the ancient biblical verse ‘from Earth to Earth’, from water to water. (via)

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