Printing Electronics On Consumer 3-D Printers Pictured: Research group leader Simon Leigh. University of Warwick

A Substance Called Carbomorph Is The Key To 3-D Printing Entire Electronic Gadgets

University of Warwick researchers have developed a new material that is conductive, piezoresistant, and printable in the latest generation of consumer 3-D printers.

By Clay Dillow
Posted 11.30.2012 at 1:00 pm

For a long time now, the ability to print electronic circuitry and components on commercially available 3-D printers has been viewed as the development that will thrust 3-D printing out of its current nascent maker space and into the mainstream of both manufacturing and home fabrication. And while it’s already been demonstrated on specialized printers in the lab, researcher at the University of Warwick in the UK have developed a low-cost material they’ve named “carbomorph” that is conductive, piezoresistive, and printable in currently available, consumer-affordable 3-D printers.

Carbomorph is essentially a carbon filler within a matrix of biodegradable polyester, a medium that can pass through the printer head of a machine like the Bits and Bytes BFB3000 that the Warwick team has now used to create everything from touch-sensitive gaming controllers, a motion-sensing glove, and a mug that knows how much liquid is in it. These things are pretty far from printing, say, a smartphone or a computer in one go, yet they represent an important step forward.

Read more: A Substance Called Carbomorph Is The Key To 3-D Printing Entire Electronic Gadgets | Popular Science.

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