Have you ever thought of buying a new car? Hop to a showroom…proceed a zero down on car…go through the cost and payment procedures and wait till you are delivered with your order, and then you own a brand new car. The delivery could consume days…weeks or even years in some cases. A really long and hectic process, isn’t it?
Dissent to the above situation, if you are told that a car can be manufactured in just 24 hours! Would it stand your belief?
Yes….you read it all right!
Image credit: REUTERS
Local Motors, which have always been a leading edge of car designs, have come up with the most amazing innovations till date- “a 3D car” that has been manufactured in just over 24 hours.
Local Motors, best known for making the Rally Fighter off-highway vehicle, have come a really long way in no duration of time.
The first 3D printed brand new sparkling innovation was named- the “STRATI”. ‘Strati’ is an Italian word that is often used to mean ‘layer’.
Strati is the world’s first 3D printed electric car.
The Strati 3D printed car project is van guarded by Local Motors. John Rogers is the CEO of this self-styled innovative company. The company is based in Arizona.
The manufacturing was carried by in collaboration with Cincinnati Incorporation and Oak Ridge Nation Laboratory. The most miraculous aspect of this 3D printed car is that it was printed in a single piece of work just in a duration of fewer than two days. Surprising, right? Yes, Strati was printed in just over 44 hours. The process used for 3D printing cars is known as “direct digital manufacturing”. No doubt it’s a seamless fabrication piece of components from computer design to physical object. It claims that it is the first time ever used method for manufacturing a car.
Above this, Strati the first 3D printed car is an “electric car”.
ALL ABOUT THE STRATI DESIGN
Local Motors project core is their ‘open-source platform’.
The exclusive design of Strati was selected from the 200 entries submitted by Local Motors’ Online Community.
Image Credits: Local Motors
The Strati has 6.1 kWh battery powering, which churns out 5 to 17 bhp and generates 56Nm of torque. It takes about three and half hours to fully charge and boasts of a range of 100 km/hr. Top speed to is at a healthy 80 km/h.
It’s a cute compact size car. The other mechanical components of the car including the battery, motor, suspension were all assembled from various sources. Renault’s urban electric car ‘Twizy’ is similar in the sense. Local Motors’ engineering team rapidly assembled the final parts of the 3D car that all went well and they took the first historic test drive.
Rogers explains: “If you can make a vehicle out of one material, you can massively reduce the number of parts.”The 3D car is mostly made of single material carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastic. This material has the same strength as the mid-grade aluminum. The energy is pure electric.
The world’s first 3D-printed car is improvised in sense of designing. The dashboard typically looks like the stacked silicone beads of a caulking gun. “We milled the sides to show how that would look,” Rogers says. “Some of the other parts are just how they came out of the printer, so you can see that. But we can make it look however we want. You could put a vinyl wrap on it and the car would still be completely recyclable.”
Strati is not tailor designed for highways, so there’s no deal of passing all of the safety standards tests. The 3D car can be licensed without these tests.
Local Motors plans to start selling production- level cars for between $18,000 & $30,000.
3D PRINTING- CORE OF STRATI
For the time when Local Motors had signed a partnership agreement with the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, in January; they had no printing material available at hand. They had neither a printing machine nor any printing, material. Most amazingly, they didn’t even have a car design ready. Just forget about 3D printers and stuff. It took a short period of six months and within no time they were ready with all the 3D printing material handy.
Image Credits: Local Motors
- Strati is a neighborhood electric vehicle.
- It is a two-seater 3D printed car.
- It runs on the 12-kilowatt powertrain.
- The mile range is 100-120 miles.
- The maximum speed offered is 40mph.
The Local Motors started printing in the last three months. It took more than 140 hours of printing time to complete a 3D car within just 45 hours of a week. Everything was just matter of months. They had set up a micro-factory on the show floor. This is what provided the printing team with a freedom to try every possible thing and simultaneously try changes in the creation. They reached Phase I.
They acquired a mill to remove excess material. Phase II reached.
Then the assembly cell assembled the car together from 50 parts.
The 3D printer did all of the jobs like sheets upon sheets, brackets upon fastener upon glue upon rubber seal upon glass upon harness; everything into a single machine.
The 3D printer printed everything, right from the chassis, the body, the dash, the center console, the seats, the fenders, the bonnet, the boot and the whole 3D car. Further moving to the springs, the struts, the motors, the battery, the steering wheel, the headlights and tail lights, the blinkers; all these components were the later addition.
The invention of 3D printing in the automotive manufacturing landscape is highly becoming a need of trend to cope up with the competition in the production of cars. 3D printing companies such as Stratasys, GE, and 3D Systems are only continuing to improve their technology
Apparently, there is a heck lot of time for people to think about going for this kind of 3D printed car.
But undoubtedly, this power-packed 3D printed car- Strati, has redefined an incredibly new and the next future for car manufacturing.