MIT has unveiled a 3D printer that allows users to print 10 different materials at the same time. A team of researchers at MIT was busy working on this project for quite some time now. And their efforts have paid off.
How does this technology work?
The new printer mixes microscopic droplets of photopolymers, instead of extruding materials. It then shoots the microscopic droplets through inkjet style printers.
Speaking about this new machine, Javier Ramos, CSAIL research engineer at CSAIL and the co-author of the paper, remarked, “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.”
He also said that the whole team behind the project has a firm belief that it is not difficult to scale the technology for use in hobbyist and commercial applications.
As the machine is going to deliver complicated results easily, the system is said to be quite complicated itself. The whole system works on a central computer. As the items are being created, this computer on the one side directs the machine while on the other side continuously receives a stream of data from camera array and a 40-micron resolution 3D scanner. This data then permit the printer to correct itself in the process.
On the other hand, it permits users to place objects into the printer for printing. We don’t know if this dream of the team will turn into reality, but they are now looking forward to users being able to keep their cell phones in the machine and get a 3D print out of it.