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Simultaneous 3-D Printing
"3-D printing is great, assuming you're printing one material for one purpose, and that you're fine with a few do-overs. But the technology is still far behind in reliably producing a variety of useful objects, with no assembly required, at a moderate cost.
In recent years, companies have been working to tackle some of these challenges with "multi-material" 3-D printers that can fabricate many different functional items. Such printers, however, have traditionally been limited to three materials at a time, can cost as much as $250,000 each, and still require a fair amount of human intervention.
But this week, researchers at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) say that they've found a way to make a better, cheaper, more user-friendly printer. In a paper accepted at the SIGGRAPH computer-graphics conference, a CSAIL team presented a 3-D printer that can print an unprecedented 10 different materials at once by using 3-D scanning techniques that save time, energy, and money.
Dubbed MultiFab, the printer can self-calibrate and self-correct, it also gives users the ability to embed complex components, such as circuits and sensors, directly onto the body of an object. It has been built using low-cost, off the shelf components that cost around $7,000 total."
To read more about MultiFab, and how they have overcome all the challenges of simultaneous 3-D printing of finished products, and to see a video, please visit the news releast at: http://news.mit.edu/2015/multifab-3-d-print-10-materials-0824
Did you know members of public have been published in academic journals and thanked in the media for their work? Would you like to be one of those people, get some fame and bragging rights while helping science?
If you have a couple of hours a week, and an internet connection, you can make a substantial contribution to schooling about the universe, just in time for Back to School.
Here are 7 ways to get involved:
NASA successfully completed a dramatic test of the Orion spacecrafts parachute system and its ability to perform in the event of a partial deployment on re-entry. On Wednesday, Aug 26, a test version of Orion touched down in the Arizona desert after engineers intentionally failed two different parachutes used in the sequence that stabilizes and slows the spacecraft for landing.
As part of the test, engineers also evaluated a change to the risers, which connect the parachutes to the vehicle from steel to a textile material as well as the use of lighter weight suspension lines for several of the parachutes. Both changes reduce overall mass and volume of the system.
Orion's parachute system is a critical part of returning future crews who will travel to an asteroid, on toward Mars and return to Earth in the spacecraft. The first parachutes deploy when the crew module is traveling more than 300 mph, and in a matter of minutes, the entire parachute system enables it to touch down in the ocean at about 20 mph.
To learn more, please visit: