Soon, 3D-printing may become a thing of beauty – or better fiber optics, after researchers from the Massachussetts Institute of Technology figured out to 3D-print glass.
Dubbed G3DP, the transparent glass printing process was developed by Mediated Matter Group, MIT’s Department of Mechnical Engineering and MIT’s Glass Lab.
MIT also posted a video of the process.
The process uses a dual heated chamber concept, with the upper chamber acting as a Kiln Cartridge while the lower chamber annealing the structures.
“G3DP is an additive manufacturing platform designed to print optically transparent glass. The tunability enabled by geometrical and optical variation driven by form, transparency and color variation can drive; limit or control light transmission, reflection and refraction, and therefore carries significant implications for all things glass,” MIT said.
Also, MIT said the project “synthesizes modern technologies, with age-old established glass tools and technologies producing novel glass structures with numerous potential applications.”
It said a selection of glass pieces will be exhibited at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in 2016.