3D Printing On the Go: Portable 3D Printer PopFab Fits in a Suitcase
Every consumer electronic technology starts out large and eventually becomes portable. Computers were once mainframes the size of a large room and now can fit in the palm of your hand. The same trend is being followed for 3D printers.
Two MIT students have designed PopFab: a 3D printer that fits in a suitcase and can be a carry-on piece of luggage.
Described as a multi-tool, perhaps the Swiss Army knife of 3D printers, the video below shows the two students setting up PopFab bit by bit, and is part of a series that will show off the mobile 3D printer’s capabilities.
In just a few moments, the students assembled the printer through attaching the printing head to a fold-out arm. Next, they placed the printing material and connected a computer which is used to relay the design to the machine.
In the video, the printer is used to create a small, three dimensional fish. However, the portable design could potentially be used to perform different functions — change the toolhead, switch the service. For example, the team believe it could also be used to cut vinyl, perform milling or draw programmed designs.