Enhancing Digital Fabrication with Advanced Modeling Techniques
MetadataShow full item record
A few years ago there were only expensive machineries dedicated to rapid prototyping for professionals or industrial application, while nowadays very affordable solutions are on the market and have become useful tools for experimenting, providing access to final users. Given the digital nature of these machine-controlled manufacturing processes, a clear need exists for computational tools that support this new way of productional thinking. For this reason the ultimate target of this research is to improve the easiness of use of such technologies, providing novel supporting tools and methods to ultimately sustain the concept of democratized design (“fabrication for the masses”). In this thesis we present a novel set of methods to enable, with the available manufacturing devices, new cost-effective and powerful ways of producing objects. The contributions of the thesis are three. The first one is a technique that allows to automatically create a tangible illustrative representation of a 3D model by interlocking together a set of planar pieces, which can be fabricated using a 2D laser cutter. The second method allows to automatically design flexible reusable molds to produce many copies of an input digital object. The designs produced by this method can be directly sent to a 3D printer and used to liquid-cast multiple replicas using a wide variety of materials. The last technique is a method to fabricate, using a single-material 3D printer, objects with custom elasticity, and an optimization strategy that, varying the elastic properties inside the volume, is able to design printable objects with a prescribed mechanical behavior.