Glass has a long history as a building material and is arguably one of the most important materials that enables our modern way of life. Imagine what your day would be like if we eliminated glass? Beyond being dark, there would be a sense of separation from the outside would that would be quite distressing.
Now a team at the Glass Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have taken on what some would say is the least likely candidates for 3D printing, given the extreme temperatures required for it to retain a molten state. However, these researchers from MIT have now devised sophisticated methods for applying 3D printing techniques to this essential building material.
The end result is the ability to produce glass structures of incredible detail, complexity and precision, whose creation would be almost impossible even for the most adept glass artist. The team also suggests that at an advanced level the technology could also be applied to the use of printable optoelectronics, which is the embedding of optical fibres into a 3D-printed glass building facade, so that the skin of a building would take on smart capabilities.
Take a look at the video below for more information.