Researchers at the University of Maine have produced the largest 3D print, a boat which has been christened 3Dirigo.
Produced at the UMaine Advanced Structures and Composites Center, the boat measures 7.62 meters in length and weighs 2,260 kilograms.
Three world records were awarded to the project, including the largest 3D-printed solid part, the largest 3D-printed boat, and also the largest 3D printer.
The 3D printer was developed by the UMaine team and Ingersoll Machine Tools. It has a printing volume of 30 meters long by 6.70 meters wide by 3.0 meters tall. The print head is mounted on a gantry which moves on rails.
The machine was designed to use raw materials which include cellulose/wood product. This use of composite material follows on from a $20 million grant awarded to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory earlier this year to support development of a 3D print process using wood fiber.
With a maximum print capacity of 225 kilogram per hour, 3Dirigo boat was printed in 72 hours. The hull was designed by Navatek, a leading ship designer.
The boat will now be tested at the Alfond W2 Ocean Engineering Laboratory, which offers a high-performance wind machine and multi-directional wave basin.
The UMaine team received $500,000 from the Maine Technology Institute to support exploration of large-scale 3D printing using wood-filled plastics.