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Are we on the verge of replicators we saw in Star Trek?

It strikes me read that start to have claims for patent infringement because of the use of replicators particular level objects ... so I decided to research the topic.

What are the replicators objects?

They also called 3D printers, although the term is spreading is "replicators" or "maker bots”.

So far this technology was reserved for technology centers that created prototypes for companies in sectors as diverse as medical, aerospace, capital equipment, automotive, tools and others, and they wanted to test models created in CAD before being put into production. In this way, they can see the finished pieces (at high cost, of course) designs and decide whether or not they are correct.

How does this technology work?

There are several ways to run a replicator. The most common is to use what they call Fused Depiosition Modelling or FDM. This technology allows from a CAD design, the printer will depositing molten material (which may be polyurethane foam, potato starch, or any other material allowing be patterned) layer by layer, until the equivalent design piece.

That is, no works by creating a mold of the piece and filling, but it creates the piece superimposing very thin layers of molten material and copying 3D design has been delivered to the printer.

web pages that 3D designs are exchanged between users

The widespread use of this type of 3D printers has led resulted in the emergence of websites where people exchange 3D designs for all kinds of parts. That is, the Napster of 3D designs.

One of these pages is Thingiverse. Here we can see, for example, the tab for a design that allows you to replicate Christmas balls: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:34942 the balls design has been downloaded more than 1,600 times and 16 users have posted pictures of the replicas made by themselves.

As good fruit of the 2.0 era, the page is meant as a Social Media allows more and comment, share designs, share photos of other designs that you already have replicated, etc. Here we can see the pictures of people who have used the design of Christmas balls http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:34942/copies

It seems therefore that the replicators are no longer limited to technology centers.

How is a replicator?

Looking for more information on these machines, I found a website where you sell MakerBot. Here you can see images of how one of these 3D printers. To my look a little big to keep at home ... but I say, looking at the pictures of the replicated objects using hanging in Tingverse designs, there seems to be more printers scattered around the world than we might think judging by the size of these machines .

Anyway ... it seems patent infringement object design will start to generalize these machines evolve and get it all with a machine in every home.

We are still far from Star Trek replicators, but it seems that we are approaching to "replicators appearance" ... it's something.

I hope the article is interesting you like. My research has fascinated me more about it.

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