A newly announced partnership shows how NFTs could be used with 3D print technology.
NFTs, or “non fungible tokens”, are digital entities present on a blockchain. As such they are immutable, enternal and can follow specified digital logic rules. An explanation of how this works is well beyond this post, but suffice to say that an NFT can be used to define a digital asset that cannot be copied, faked or managed in ways it does not permit.
In the past I’ve speculated on ways that NFTs could be used in 3D printing. There are several persistent issues in the 3D print world that deserve solutions, like asset ownership, streaming security and more, and it’s possible some of these might be solved by some ingenious use of NFTs. In the end, I wasn’t able to identify a clear solution.
Now there’s an intriguing announcement regarding NFTs by Arevo. Arevo is a 3D printing company that uses its own proprietary equipment and process to 3D print very strong continuous carbon fiber parts. They make deals with other parties to produce unusual items, such as custom-fit carbon fiber bike frames, for example.
Arevo announced a partnership with Animoca Brands, a company providing digital property rights to the gaming community by using NFT technology. The idea is that gaming assets should be truly owned by the creator, and thus could be transferred or licensed by authorized users, and Animoca Brands provides the plumbing to do so.
The announcement is that Arevo will produce custom carbon fiber bikes for Animoca Brands using these digital gaming assets. They explain:
“Arevo, Inc. has partnered with Animoca Brands to produce a line of custom carbon fiber bikes inspired by and decorated with individually owned NFT artwork.
As one of the central players in Web3, Animoca Brands’ partnership with Arevo represents a significant step toward connecting the “matterverse” to the “metaverse,” linking unique digital goods with unique physical goods. Future product releases will marry Arevo’s ability to enable mass customization of high-end carbon fiber products with NFT-validated artwork from various communities of artists and owners.”
Animoca Brands co-founder and executive chairman Yat Siu said:
“Arevo’s groundbreaking carbon fiber 3D printing technology is a peek at the structure of the open metaverse that Animoca Brands is championing – a Web3 future in which personalization is routine, digital ownership is ubiquitous, and the wall between physical and virtual goods comes tumbling down.”
I presume the plan would be to produce exactly one bike per NFT (if that is the specific rule for production according to the assigned NFT’s logic), thus maintaining the asset as intended.
The mathematical protection of the blockchain does not extend to the physical world, and so these bikes could in theory be replicated and thus break the NFT’s property protection logic.
However, it is a way for items created for and existing within the digital world to find their way into physical reality. The presence of these physical NFT artwork assets could then be used to promote the original virtual assets.