While plastic has been the go-to for 3D printing so far, researches at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have found a way to 3D print using glass.
The new method, called 3DGP, works pretty much in the same way as traditional plastic 3D printing, but instead uses transparent glass.
MIT’s Media Lab worked with the school’s Mechanical Engineering Department, the MIT Glass Lab and Wyss Institute to create the new technology.
It essentially uses a molten form of the glass material and layers it by modulating and varying the thickness of the print.
The printer is made up of two heated chambers stacked atop one another, with the upper chamber heating up to 1900-degree F to work as a “Kiln Cartridge” while the lower chamber heats and then cools so soften the glass material, according to MIT.
The MIT team says that it all works together to create the “first of its kind optically transparent glass printing” that can be used in “numerous potential applications.”
You can check out the video of the 3D glass printing tech here.