While most conventional 3D printing methods rely on laser beams to harden the materials used for construction, a new, innovative method uses ultrasound waves instead. This means that in future it will even be possible to print directly in the body.
With "Direct Sound Printing" (DSP), Canadian scientists have developed a 3D printing process that hardens the objects to be built with the help of ultrasonic waves. The pressure and temperature increase required for this only takes a few picoseconds and thus does not damage the surrounding material. The team around Muthukumaran Packirisam from the Gina Cody School of Engineering and Computer Science in Montreal has explained in detail how this works in the scientific journal Nature Communications.
According to the German IT specialist portal golem.de (link in German), the researchers see the possible application scenarios as including ...
... in medicine: with DSP, an implant could be printed directly in the body by injecting the building material and transforming it into an implant by the sound transducer.
... in the aviation industry: Here, repairs can be made to internal structures without having to open the fuselage or wing.
You can find more information about the materials used and a YouTube video about the new process here on the website of the Canadian university:
Text: Ingo Schenk