Miniature Metal Michelangelo's David

Print your very own miniature metal Michelangelo’s David made completely out of copper. How you choose to spice up the post-production process would be exciting to see, so please share those photos if you do so!

“Ercolano printed David in two sizes: first as a sculpture just 1 millimeter high, and then one 10 times smaller. ‘The smaller figure is only as tall as the pedestal of the larger one,’ he says.

But with structures that small, achieving the required resolution becomes problematic. Printed metallic micro-objects typically start at 1 micrometer (µm), and for more complex and detailed objects, sizes range from 100 µm to 1 mm. In terms of time, too, the 1 mm model is a world away from the one that is ten times smaller: the device needed 30 hours to create the ‘big’ David but just 20 minutes for the smaller version.

Theoretically, the system can print objects up to 5 mm in size, but the printer cartridge contains only a micro-liter of ‘ink’—just about enough for manufacturing the larger David. But it is also enough ‘ink’ to print hundreds or even thousands of tiny objects, which represents the real strength of the process.

The printing process is of interest first and foremost to the electronics industry. With this method, manufacturers could connect computer chips together or precisely repair microelectronics systems. Although other metals can be printed, such as platinum, gold, nickel, or silver, copper is in highest demand. ‘Nine out of ten inquiries are about copper,’ Ercolano says.”

Grab the full article here.

Categories: Design & Process