My watch list  

Making data matter

A multimaterial, voxel-printing method turns imaging datasets into physical objects


The Mediated Matter Group / MIT Media Lab

The 291,362 colored line segments in this 3D-printed model of a human brain represent bundles of axons that connect different regions of the brain, color-coded based on their orientation in 3D space.

The Mediated Matter Group / MIT Media Lab

This structure is a physical representation of a simulation of pressure being applied to a square tube, with red areas representing the greatest deformation

The Mediated Matter Group / MIT Media Lab

A computational fluid simulation of white and green fluids mixing in a transparent volume was freeze-framed and 3D printed using multiple materials to indicate the intermingling liquids.

The Mediated Matter Group / MIT Media Lab

A 3D-printed model of the protein crystal structure of Apolipoprotein A-I, a dataset containing 6,588 points for each atom and 13,392 line segments for each interatomic bond.

The world is awash in digital images, from photographs to x-rays to computer models to 3D scans. The advent of 3D printing has made it possible to take imaging data and print it into physical representations, but the process of doing so has been prohibitively time-intensive and costly.

A new data processing method developed through a joint collaboration between the Wyss Institute and the MIT Media Lab removes that roadblock by converting various different forms of complex 3D data into a stack of high resolution “dithered bitmaps” which preserves extremely fine details and material gradients present in the source files. The researchers hope that this “bridging of the gap between digital information representation and physical material composition” will help democratize 3D printing and eventually allow anyone to print an accurate, detailed, full-color 3D model of almost anything imaginable.

Facts, background information, dossiers
  • 3D-printing
  • voxels
  • 3d imaging
More about Harvard University
  • News

    Meta-surface corrects for chromatic aberrations across all kinds of lenses

    Today's optical systems -- from smartphone cameras to cutting-edge microscopes -- use technology that hasn't changed much since the mid-1700s. Compound lenses, invented around 1730, correct the chromatic aberrations that cause lenses to focus different wavelengths of light in different spot ... more

    Tiny spiders, big color

    There's plenty that's striking about Phoroncidia rubroargentea, a species of spider native to Madagascar, starting with their size - at just three millimeters, they're barely larger than a few grains of salt. But the reason they caught Sarah Kariko's eye had more to do with their color. Unl ... more

    Speeding up material discovery

    In even the most fuel-efficient cars, about 60 percent of the total energy of gasoline is lost through heat in the exhaust pipe and radiator. To combat this, researchers are developing new thermoelectic materials that can convert heat into electricity. These semiconducting materials could r ... more

  • Videos

    A diamond radio receiver

    Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences have made the world’s smallest radio receiver – built out of an assembly of atomic-scale defects in pink diamonds. This tiny radio — whose building blocks are the size of two atoms — can withstand extrem ... more

    A 3-D Material that Folds, Bends and Shrinks on its Own

    Harvard researchers have designed a new type of foldable material that is versatile, tunable and self actuated. It can change size, volume and shape; it can fold flat to withstand the weight of an elephant without breaking, and pop right back up to prepare for the next task. more

    New Polymers for Solar Power

    As part of the 2015–2016 Fellows’ Presentation Series at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Scott T. Milner RI ’16 discusses current trends in solar power, how solar cells work, and how polymer-based materials may offer an attractive alternative to silicon. more

Your browser is not current. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 does not support some functions on Chemie.DE