USC Investigating Multi-Material 3D Printing

By on November 21st, 2013 in research


Researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering led by Professor Yong Chen have demonstrated a new method of 3D printing multiple materials. By “multiple” we mean two materials that can be combined in different ratios. For example, the process can print an object that has both hard and soft portions – in different degrees – and do this in a single print operation. 
The only other process known to accomplish this type of multi-material 3D printing is Stratasys’ PolyJet process. However, the new USC process, a modification of their previously developed mask-image-projection-based stereolithography (MIP-SL) process, is dramatically faster than the Stratasys process. 
The new process seems destined for commercial use eventually, but as of this writing, it’s not known when products using the MIP-SL multi-material approach. We hope it’s soon. 

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!