We finally got our clay 3D printer setup and made some test prints! This 3D printer will be used to print the coral habitats for our 3D Printed Coral project to help regrow coral reefs all around the world!
These habitats will act as a safe place where we can plant coral polyps so that they will have a better chance of establishing coral structures that will eventually become reefs. Coral can be delicate and finicky so giving them this big headstart will hopefully promote growth and provide beautiful coral gardens beneath every SeaPod!
This 3D printer uses clay material that is safe for marine life in our oceans. It wouldn’t make sense to promote coral growth using a material that will pollute the waters. The porous surface of the clay will help several kinds of marine life find a home to grow.
This is just a quick demo of how the printing works. The printer draws a design and lays the clay down layer by layer. Over time, the structure will get taller and taller until the entire structure is complete. After we complete the printing, we will need to fire the habitats in our homemade kiln so that they will be hardened and have the strength to survive many years in the water.
The crew has been working hard and we have been seeing good results so far. We will keep experimenting until we can get our clay mixture and printer settings exactly where we need them. In the meantime, keep an eye on the blog for more updates about all of our exciting projects that are going on!