3D printing with ice


24 Responses to “3D printing with ice”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, I was going to say (like nanuq) that all those ice sculptors will go bye-bye. Load in a CAD file, hit print and ship out the sculpture to the party….

  2. Anonymous says:

    They are using the Fab@Home printer designed at Cornell University.

    It’s interesting how they make things like the handle of that mug. A brine solution support material with lower melting point is printed where they want to space to be, and the actual object is pure water. Bring the temperature up to the range between the two melting points and the support material melts away.

  3. Anonymous says:

    could this be use as an alternative for lost wax casting? it seems to me that this is a more realistic development than whole buildings.

  4. elguapostrikes says:

    We may need epic john henry style competion between a 3d printer and a man with a chainsaw…

  5. Anonymous says:

    It seems to capable of MUCH smoother surfaces than the Candyfab.

  6. thickslop says:

    Yes! We need an ice sculpting folk hero…

  7. Anonymous says:

    Ice cold!
    Improvements in technology for 3D printers technology has allowed a huge range of companies (not just CAD designers) to use different materials (often low cost) instead of plastic or metals. 3D printing is surely only going to get better and cheaper.

  8. Zadaz says:

    Why stop at ice buildings? Scale it up to build ice planets. Hoth ain’t going to build its self!

    Or scaled down it could create ice viruses and ice nanomachines.

    (Can someone tell me how structures that quickly melt or sublimate and need to regularly be rebuilt are somehow environmentally friendly? Sure, water. But the energy it would take to rebuild one every few months would be silly.)

    • DarwinSurvivor says:

      You could make some DAMN cool looking ice cubs for themed parties with that sucker! In fact, if you replaced the secondary material they were using (which they melted away to leave voids), you culd make multi-colored icecubs with 3d colored objects in the center.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know, Inspector. It’s very strange. We couldn’t find any bullet fragments at all.

  10. JayConverse says:

    Sorry, articians, the scientist gut-feel in me says it it’s cheaper to freeze a block, and remove what is not the sculpture. I leave it to the grad students to do the math.

    • Anonymous says:

      >the scientist gut-feel in me

      isn’t “scientist gut-feel” an oxymoron? the scientific method dictates testing, not guessing. besides, this is quite likely more precise than a chisel and possibly cheaper than a laser rig for comparable precision.

      • neurolux says:

        >isn’t “scientist gut-feel” an oxymoron?

        No, not really. Where do you think hypotheses come from?

  11. EH says:

    “ice-tourism industry?”

    • corinroyal says:

      A scientist’s gut-feel is another word for informed guess. It’s not science ’til it’s tested, but testable ideas come from one’s knowledge-primed imagination. Imagination is a huge, but misunderstood part of science.

  12. Anonymous says:

    So cool!

  13. Nick Harkaway says:

    Huh. I wonder if you could use this to print with Pykrete? And then make an ice-based Replicating Rapid Prototyper?

  14. dainel says:

    Could a rubber mould be made out of this ice, and from that, a more permanent object made.

  15. nanuq says:

    Add ice sculptors everywhere start sobbing…

    • Anonymous says:

      You might notice how entirely milky the ice is in the pic. Unless they can get crystal clear ice, well, that market is still there.

  16. Anonymous says:

    There are already tons of CNC routers that ice carvers use to carve ice; there are already haves and have nots in the industry re automation. This will allow more complex sculptures, but it will compete on cost with some very effective CNC solutions already out there like http://www.icerouter.net/

  17. Anonymous says:

    I love how university projects have to put in a practical applications for their work in their press kits, but only seem to spend 3 minutes working on it. Example being the bit about making environmentally friendly structures. 5 years ago, the same project would be fighting terrorism. Part of it simply must be hunting for research money.

    Why don’t they just make the thing and let it be in true hacker fashion rather than cobble up some practical application because that’s what you are supposed to do?
    I see it a much stronger idea that way.

  18. Andrew Katz says:

    This could be pykrete-tastic.

  19. Guesstimate Jones says:

    I’m sure my ice-sculpting friends will be thrilled with this new, labor-saving wonder…

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