A delve in to the world of materials.
Not what it seems, and I just made the name up. It's something I am working on at the second and other people have been working on to. Its a very
simple formula, take bio-resin, a sunflower derived resin which sets with very similar attributes to standard casting or gel coat resins. But its 100%
natural, so natural infact for every 1 tonne of bioresin, it stores 2.5 tonne of CO2. Generally casting is used in conjunction with a silicone mold to
create intricate, but sometimes delicate pieces, pigments can be added to the resin to add colour, or like normal resin it can be dyed in pigment
after depending on what effect you would like to achieve. The techy point is, if you take a cane of bamboo and strip off the outside layers you are
left with very thin bamboo hairs, which can be very long depending on your stripping skills. All you have to do is lay up a layer of bioresin, leave
for 30 minutes to become tacky then as any fibreglassing lay in the bamboo hairs and lay up more resin. Viola, you now have a boat, bathtub, shin
pads, surfboard etc which is 100% organic which pretty much identical attributes to its oily sister product. Some special attributes are shatterproof
3D printing with the 30 grand price tag.
This is an open source initiative to bring 3d printing into every home. In layman's terms 3D printing is the ability to design an object in 3d
software such as Autocad, Lightwave, pro/ENGINEER, Prodesktop etc. and have the object built realtime in plastic based materials, newer machines have
the ability to do the same in a ceramic slip and solder.
This all sounds very appealing, but complicated, so this is where RepRap came in, the designed a machine for £500 give or take £150 due to the self
replication process of the machine.
You buy from the company the circuitry at £100-£150 the metal tubing for around £100 again and the plastic ABS components at around £70 and
construct it yourself for free.
You can them upload the open source file for the RepRap ABS components into the machine and print off more components which can be sold on ebay to
make your money back, or give to friend and get them started.
You now have a 3D printer which prints in organic plastic (specified by company) so what are the applications?
A real life example, you have a child who needs sandals, you cut up a couple milk bottles, put them in the hopper, download or make a 3D sandal file
and print off the sandals. But next year their footsie is 2 sizes bigger, so you chop up the sandals, add another milk bottle, upscale the sandals
file and voila, another set of sandals, no waste.
A speculation of the future of this machine, your washing machine breaks and you need a specific plastic part, which would take weeks to arrive, be
expensive, or very time consuming contacting the company. So you download the file from the company, print out the piece overnight and have the
plumber fit it the next day.
Unfortunately I don't think that idea would be too popular among business's though.
Shape Memory Alloys
A material which can remember its cold forged state which can morph from new state to old stare through application of heat. They are commonly used in
industry and medical but yet to touch our homes. In home applications are that it forms structures for windows which open and close to retain a
constant heat in the room without means of electricity requiring, temperature sensors and motors. The possibilities are endless, like a safety feature
on taps to limit the hottest it could run to avoid scalds, the metal would adjust the cold tap automatically. Pretty much any function where there is
a temperature sensor and a motor it can replace, again business's wouldn't be too happy.
I was hoping to add more to this thread and will when I get the chance to.
I am new guys, and I'd like to say a big thank you to a lot of hard work by all you ATS'ers and have noticed a few trying to spoil it. I already feel
welcomed by the community, and yet again like a lot, I was fly on the wall for a fair few months.
P.S. Sorry I couldn't be more visual, am still figuring out how to post images without a huge html line.
edit on 17-9-2011 by MBUK3D because:
(no reason given)