Image taken from DDW - © Lonneke van der Palen

Flam3D member Oceanz 3D printing contributes to innovative 3D printed chair

A great example of the benefits of 3D printing and its materials

Flam3D member Oceanz 3D Printing helps product designer Lilian van Daal build an innovative 3D printed chair. Thanks to their advanced machinery, the 3D printing company was able to develop an innovative material that mimics and combines all the benefits of natural elements. The result is a great example of the advantages that 3D printing and its materials offer in terms of freedom of form and design.

Image taken from DDW – © Lonneke van der Palen

3D printed chair, made of one material and incorporating all the desired functionalities: flexibility, adaptability, sturdiness and stability. Product designer Lilian van Daal looks for ways to innovate by using laws of nature. She experiments with innovative technologies and materials to minutely imitate nature.

The microorganisms Radiolaria and Bryozoa are an important source of inspiration. Radiolaria are single-celled organisms found in the ocean as zooplankton that get their name from the radial symmetry of their skeletal spines. Van Daal applied this principle by 3D printing structures that provide different levels of flexibility and comfort, specifically for chairs. And she does so without using different types of foam, as is common with ordinary soft chairs.

She also gained inspiration from so-called Bryozoa: moss animals that live in tropical waters and freshwater environments. The grid of connections within Bryozoa skeletons was the model for a system of connection points for assembling the chair without additional materials such as glue.

Image taken from DDW – © Lonneke van der Palen

The guiding principle in Radiolaria #1 is symmetry, which is also the main characteristic of single-celled organisms. Radiolaria #1 was produced by Flam3D member Oceanz 3D Printing, which has advanced machinery that can create structures that mimic natural solutions for durability, flexibility and connectivity at the microscopic level. The result is a mix of technology, design and nature.

Radiolaria #1 is, in fact, the follow-up to van Daal’s graduation project Biomimicry Soft Seating that was presented four years ago. Since the very first Soft Seating project, production time and energy consumption have both been reduced by 50 percent through design optimization. As a result, all elements of one chair fit into one production run of the 3D printing machine.

This article was published in Innovative Materials, a trade magazine on new, sustainable and/or promising materials for the construction and civil engineering sectors. More info about the magazine can be found on its website.

Image taken from DDW