Singapore created a 3D printed ready-to-fly drone.
Nanyang Technological University (NTU) incorporated embedded electronics in the 3D printed drone. It is jointly developed by NTU's Singapore Centre for 3D Printing (SC3DP) and Stratasys Asia Pacific, a subsidiary of Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ: SSYS), a 3D printing and additive manufacturing solutions company.
The quadcopter was designed and flown by Phillip Keane, a NTU PhD candidate from the School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.
Some grad electronics incorporated in the drone where modified and placed at different stages of the printing process, since embedding electronics can't survive high temperatures inside the 3D printer. Therefore, only motors and propellers were mounted after the process was complete.
One of the toughest challenges was to find electronic components that could theoretically survive the high temperature printing process . We had to add some heat-proofing modifications to the components to ensure they could last. This involved adding new components to the printed circuit boards and also designing custom housings," Keane said.
It took 14 hours to complete the quadcopter. The system is capable to support 60kg of weight.