This article comes from Ponoko.com. Before I talk about the article, I want to talk about Ponoko. Ponoko is a website to buy and sell digital products and maker creations. I’ll be exploring its usefulness for me in the upcoming weeks, but so far I like it’s ease of use and design. Now for the article…
Check out this printer, known as the Mataerial 3D printer. The Mataerial 3D printer uses a 2-part thermosetting resin instead of the thermoplastics commonly used in extrusion-based 3D printers. This approach allows the machine to print a line directly into the air with only a single point of contact with a surface. The surface doesn’t need to be horizontal or even; the material will even adhere to a vertical surface.
Besides the fact that this allows unusually airy and voluminous structures to be made, it also represents a fundamentally different way to 3D print. Other printers gradually builds up 2D layers of material to create a 3D shape. Using the Mataerial, there are no layers. None. The Mataerial instead directly prints a 3D curve into space.
Petr Novikov and Saša Jokic from Barcelona’s Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia created the Material printer during a collaborative research at Joris Laarman Lab. See it in action here at the Ponoko.com website.