3d printing tiny lattices water climbs up
The lattice cells are only 1mm wide.
New printers are allowing for tiny cells to be printed which, similar to the way trees use capillary action and surface tension to draw water upwards from roots to leaves (which was the model copied here), overcome a problem we have when we try to use liquids (and gasses), which is that we have only been able to use a small part of their mass as their exposed surfaces (like the surface of a container of water). If we can arrange the liquid to have more surface, we can increase its ability to perform things like cooling and exchanging gasses.
The lattices not only increase the amount of water we can have facing outward. They also bypass the downward pull of gravity (and in the future we'll be able to control the path the liquid takes along a lattice design).