Flying 3D Printers?

Drones, and 3D printers are pretty neat in their own right…but what about a flying 3D printer?

Engineers from Imperial College in London have built “flying 3D printer” drones they say, could protect people from nuclear waste.

According to an article on BBC, the quadcopter comes with an on-board 3D printer.  The researchers hope it will be particularly useful for removing hazardous materials, like nuclear waste.

In a demonstration the engineers showed the drones printing a sticky foam on dangerous objects before attaching themselves and lifting the hazard away.  The foam is said to be made of polyurethane.

The quadcopter acts almost entirely autonomously and is guided by GPS, and could be used to one day build buildings in remote areas.

The robots are said to be inspired by swiftlets, birds that construct nests using their saliva.


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