• New material lattice

    ... which looks similar to a 3d honeycomb, and whose cells have 14 sides each, 3d printed from flexible polymer, then heated until only pure carbon remained.

    They shot sand-like particles at the lattice (similar to what space debris does). At low speeds it bounced off. At high speeds it gouged out craters, crushing the lattice, and remained lodged in the material (didn't pierce the material).

  • 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).

  • A fungus, Mycelium, is being talked about as an alternative to plastic to make things

    Basically, they make a mold and then fill it with hemp or woodchips (or some other agricultural waste). This is called the 'foam.' Mycelium is also placed in the molds. The molds are then placed on racks with temperature, humidity, co2 and airflow controlled.

    The Mycelium fibers grow so they fill the mold. Then the molds are heat treated to kill the Mycelium.

    Some people are also making other products such as bacon and other artificial meats, a leather alternative, insulation, and fabrics out of Mycelium.