How many TreeHugger hot buttons can we squeeze into one title? We certainly never tire of showing the wonders that designers are creating with 3D printing; it has gone far beyond simply printing, and into the realm of things that could not possibly be made any other way. A great example comes from Dror Benshetrit, a designer that we also never tire of. It is a lamp that folds completely flat; you just pick it up and unfurl it. Watch the video:
It is produced using a 3D printing process called laser sintering; Cliff Kuang of Fast Company explains it better than I did :
The process works by sweeping a laser across a pan of powdered nylon; when the lasers hit the nylon, it fuses ("sinters"). The process repeats in layers, until the final product emerges. Thus, you can create interlocking shapes all at once--for example, a chain whose links are completely closed.
When we last posted on a product made this way, commenter Mike wrote:
I may have missed the point, but I can't see how this has anything to do with anything green. I think it has been posted on the wrong website by mistake. doesn't it belong on some website about design or something?
But the green thing about 3D printing is that it eliminates storage, transport, inventory, all kinds of costly components of the traditional manufacturing process. It also gives control to the consumer to order what they want, not what Mr. Storekeeper decides. I wrote on our website devoted to the idea:
It is like the music for our iPod; dematerialized bits and bytes put together again where we need it, without the waste of a physical intermediary. In a world where we watch our carbon as closely as our waistline we don't want to be driving to stores; in a world where everything can be digitized, why move material when we are interested in ideas, creativity and talent?
We will be seeing a lot more of it.
Transformer Furniture: Dror Benshetrit
Shoes that Separate Style and Structure
Transformers: Eco House by Studio Dror For Indecisive Modernists
More 3D Printing:
3D Printing Now In the Hands of Artists
Next: Downloading your Wardrobe