Publish at January 18 2023 Updated January 18 2023

Materials that obey their designer: microstructural design

A new world is opening up for the manufacture of physical products

The MuFFin project (Procedural Microstructures and stochastics for functional manufacturing) led by Jonàs Martínez, researcher of the MFX project-team at the Inria Nancy - Grand Est Center opens new perspectives in the development of 3D printed products.

Materials have known properties of strength, weight, resilience, etc., but all of them can be modulated by their structure. For example, most metals like iron or aluminum appear rigid to us, but we can make steel wool or aluminum foil out of them, which splits their properties into products that can be used differently. We can do the same with plastics, alloys and even woody compounds. The structure of their shape or assembly modifies their behavior.

"(...) we can design structures with mechanical characteristics not found in traditional materials (such as steel, wood, concrete, etc.) by computer and produce them in additive manufacturing. The field of application is then very wide, interesting both research and industry."

Jonàs Martínez

Martínez's work has led to an innovative material concept, a novel software brick, a 3D printing process and the ability for roboticists to create turnkey materials.

By simply orienting material structures, directional and steerable properties can be obtained.

For the full article: MuFFin: when 3D printing serves deformable robots

A video shows the potential of this technology

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INRIA - National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control

Domaine de Voluceau
Rocquencourt - B.P. 105
78153 Le Chesnay

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