The world of industrial design or, at least, increasingly larger sectors of it, is falling more and more in line with the green imperative these days. No longer is the ultimate goal of industrial design simply to make life easier and more comfortable, at least not in the view of many, who want to see design acknowledge the problematics of the endless cycle of production and consumption that just doesn’t sync with more sustainable, environmentally-friendly living.
Enter 3D printing, which has the capacity to take us out of the never ending cycle of planned obsolescence and into a space where creativity wins out over conspicuous consumption and where ingenuity inspires repurposing. One creative design team, which was assembled by BIO 50, the long-running industrial design exposition biennale, hosted by Slovenia’s Museum of Architecture and Design in Ljubljana, was charged with integrating the open source ideology with industrial design. Called, “Hacking Households,” the groups central goal was, in a sense, to think small. That is, to consider how changing the way we think about convenience and consumption in our daily lives, particularly in the home.
The team is being led by two experienced designers, Tilen Sepič and Jesse Howard. The objective was to capitalize on the availability of do-it-yourself circuitry, open source software with robust applications that may easily be produced by connecting chunks of pre-existing code, 3D printing technology, basic domestic appliances, and some very basic materials and tools.
This forward-thinking Hacking Households team, which is comprised of designers Leonardo Amico, Thibault Brevet, Coralie Gourguechon, Jure Martinec, Nataša Muševič, along with Howard and Sepič, began by applying a basic tenet of industrial design: design to standards. They’ve designed and manufactured a series of small, household appliances ranging from a balloon-enclosed lamp to a hand mixer to a series of fans. The basic framework of each appliance is very simple to allow for customization as well as greater variability.
Hacking Households’ designs are on display at the BIO 50 exposition and the group’s video demonstrates how their system works. With the fan, simple wooden dowels connected by 3D-printed joints provide a framework. The blades of the fan–as few as three will suffice–appear also to have been 3D printed. The demo shows the motor of a household mixer being used to power the fan blades but the team notes that other small appliances can be substituted, with standard power blocks, swapped between them. Additionally, thanks to open source software, a “smart” power block can be used to provide controls via the internet.
The appliances are easy to modify and, more importantly, to repair. So, rather than tossing away a non-functional hand mixer or fan, they can be cleverly repurposed, with sustainability and curbing excessive consumption in mind. Indeed, one clever option with the fan: a heating element that can convert the device from summer to winter use. Let’s hear your thoughts on this clever way of using 3D printing to reuse old appliances in the ‘3D Printed Sustainable Industrial Design’ forum thread on 3DPB.com.Designboom]
You May Also Like
Interview with Scott Sevcik, VP Aerospace Stratasys, on 3D Printing for Aviation and Space
Out of all the possible industries that are deploying more 3D printers, aerospace is probably the most exciting. By reducing the weight of aircraft components, by iterating more, by integrating...
Researchers Use Autodesk Ember 3D Printer to Characterize 3D Printed Lenses
In the recently published ‘Characterization of 3D printed lenses and diffraction gratings made by DLP additive manufacturing,’ international researchers studied digital fabrication of optical parts using DLP 3D printing. Examining...
3D Printing in Dental Prosthetics: The Effects of Parameters on Fit & Gap
In the recently published ‘Effects of Printing Parameters on the Fit of Implant-Supported 3D Printing Resin Prosthetics,” authors Gang-Seok Park, Seong-Kyun Kim, Seong-Joo Heo, Jai-Young Koak, and Deog-Gyu Seo delve...
Longer3D Launches the Orange 10, Affordable SLA 3D Printer
3D printer manufacturer Longer3D has launched a highly competitive resin printer, the Longer Orange 10, an affordable SLA 3D printer with performance and specs that position it competitively in its...
View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.