What Is Digital Fabrication?

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Author: Roslyn
Published: 26 Nov 2021

3D Modeling and Cutting

The first step is to use a computer aided design. The 3D model is exported as a triangulated mesh, which uniformly describes the geometry in terms of points on the surface or the edges of the faces, and in some cases, the normal vectors and color. Laser cutting uses a laser to cut through a wide range of materials.

Laser cutter are cost-effective, fast, and easy to use for cutting thin, flat-sheet materials for prototypes, mechanical and structural parts. Basic engravers are available for less than $500, while mid-range laser cutter for the workshop that can cut through multiple materials is around $3,500. Laser cutter drivers often include a software that interprets 2D drawings.

Water jet cutter use water mixed with abrasive and high pressure to cut through material Water jet cutting is the latest process to be used in a smaller, more accessible form with prices starting around $20,000 and new projects promise to soon push below $10,000. Water jet cutters can cut thicker sheets than laser cutter and work with hard materials that are difficult to cut using other processes.

Solid modeling is a traditional way of creating 3D objects that are geared towards linear motions. Solids are finished with transitions to make them suitable for digital manufacturing. The advanced features include drafted extrusions, curvature fillets, and patterning operations.

Two-dimensional systems can be driven by files from the Adobe Illustrator program. Basic drawing skills are not required beyond a familiarity with the pen tool, patterning, live trace, and a tool to create rounded corners. A mesh model is usually suited for 3D printing already, because it leaves a design software package.

Digital fabrication

Digital fabrication is the production of objects with machines that are controlled by a computer. A digital file is sent to the machine to be printed. The computer controls the movement of a sharp blade to cut out shapes and letters from sheets of self-adhesive vinyl, paper, felt or fabric. The blade can be swapped for a different tool in some machines.

SHoP Architectures: Anoma

Twin brothers Chris and Bill Sharples are the founding partners of SHoP Architects, a New York-based firm that brings together diverse expertise in designing buildings and environments that improve the quality of public life. Anoma is a product design studio that explores the potential of natural stone. Digital manufacturing and traditional hand craftsmanship are combined to create its surfaces, sculptures, and installations.

DFC Technologies: Dreams and Reality

The dreams for DFC technologies are big. From printing multistory buildings to colonies on Mars. DFC technologies are still in their infancy.

Digital fabrication of large-scale structures

Any manufacturing process that is controlled by a computer is covered by digital fabrication. Although technologies are constantly expanding, they mainly involve one of three methods: subtractive manufacturing, robotic manipulation and Additive manufacturing. Any other form of digital manufacturing like bending, folding, weaving are included in the third category.

It holds the advantage that, with the right tools, a robot can be used for a variety of tasks. MIT's Fiberbots project is a robotic manufacturing process that uses weaving and free-form printing to create large-scale objects. The research was supposed to move away from uniaxial fabrication and create a framework applicable across scales.

MIT's Mediated Matter Group is trying to achieve another breakthrough innovative building materials. Concrete has a very high carbon footprint and is one of the most important research topics. The scope of material development is exemplified by the research project of MIT and Neri Oxman.

The design uses all elements found in nature, including water, to create materials with specific mechanical and optical properties. Digital fabrication can be used to make a variety of structures and designs. Smart Slab is a design and fabrication process that is very precise.

The concrete slab is made using 3D-printed formwork and has been designed for minimal use of material necessary to make it load-bearing. The DFAB House is an investigation into how digital fabrication can change architecture, with five fabrication methods applied to different architectural elements. Digital fabrication has the possibility for new looks.

Local Manufacturing: Opportunities and Challenges

The opportunity for local manufacturing can lead to more opportunities for marketing and positioning since consumers tend to appreciate products made in their local community. You can partner with other businesses nearby to appeal to customers in the area. Digital fabrication offers manufacturers opportunities to scale their operations.

You can still use your original designs even if you switch to a more efficient platform. Digital fabrication brings benefits to manufacturing businesses and also brings more equitable distribution to the supply chain. Rather than having to go for the traditional processes, manufacturers can gain more power in the process and not have their prices squeezed by distributors or retailers.

Designing Digital Devices for Market

Students are able to quickly visualize and prototype devices by learning how to use maker prototyping technologies such as 3D printers, digital die cutter, and virtual reality tools. DMF students are good at refining technology creations and devices to make them ready for market.

OptiProERP: A leading global provider of end-toend industry solutions

A leading global provider of industry-specific solutions for manufacturers and distributors is OptiProERP. Backed by deep industry expertise and driven by a commitment to customer service, OptiProERP delivers best-in-class, end-to-end industry solutions built on the market-leading platform for small and mid-sized enterprises.

Digital technologies in the construction industry: a case study

Sub-standard working conditions are still involved in many building processes. Digital technologies within construction processes promise to contribute to sustainable and productivity, while at the same time enabling completely new forms of architectural expression. Establishing a digital building culture is still a challenge because of the multi-disciplinary nature of integrating digital processes.

Strong interdisciplinary research is required in order to fully exploit the potential of digital fabrication. Strong research connections are needed for disciplines that are traditionally separated. The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Switzerland, Ronald Rael, University of California, Berkeley, U.S.A., and Jane Burry, RMIT University, Australia reveal the latest.

FabLab: A Lab for Innovation

In Afghanistan, people are making their own limbs, while in South Africa, a government project is making internet connected computers that cost just ten dollars each. Commercial activities can be started in the FabLab but they must not conflict with open access, they should grow beyond the lab, and they are expected to benefit the inventors, labs, and networks that contribute to their success.

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