Remember how the T-1000 robot in Terminator 2 would constitute itself from a puddle of mercury-like liquid? That's what inspired a new 3D-printing technology developed by Carbon3D (Redwood City, CA). It could represent a quantum leap for 3D printing, producing solid final parts 25 to 100 times faster than current technology. Stents and false teeth printed while you wait are among the medical applications envisioned by the inventors.
Continuous Liquid Interface Production (CLIP) technology uses finely tuned light and oxygen to continuously grow objects from a pool of resin, rather than creating them layer by layer, as conventional 3D printing does. Carbon3D CEO and co-founder Joseph DeSimone demonstrated the machine at this week's TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) conference in Vancouver, BC, Canada, where it printed a plastic ball from a pool of resin in 10 minutes, reports BBC News. "It would traditionally take up to 10 hours to print this," DeSimone told the audience. "There are mushrooms that grow faster than some 3D-printed parts," he joked. A paper on the technology was published simultaneously in Science on March 16, 2015.