Central regions | Technology & innovation | Finance, business
Moscow’s MISiS and MIT jointly push their Machines That Make Machines
25 Oct '13
Moscow-based MISiS, a leading Russian university of technology, and MIT have completed the first stage of their joint project called “Machines That Make Machines,” Rusnanonet.ru reported.
The project is aimed at gradually replacing costly commercial equipment with self-made one resulting from what is called “self-replication.”
At MISiS’ FabLab, four software-powered desktop milling machines have been built, using an entirely new set of technologies.
FabLab (which stands for “fabrication laboratory”) is what some refer to as a “lab of having a dream come true.” It’s a place where a student, engineer or anybody else could implement his or her technology idea, taking little time and spending little money.
The Russian FabLab network might become one of the world’s largest; plans are to set up more than 100 such labs. Borrowed from the original MIT brainchild, Russia’s adapted FabLab concept first materialized at MISiS last year. In their work, FabLab participants use automated digital 3D milling machines, lasers, 3D printers, plotters, advanced systems of rapid 3D modeling and other high-tech tools.
The Machines That Make Machines project paves the way for a wide variety of opportunities that people would have in developing personal digital production both at MISiS and across Russia. The MISiS FabLab is not going to limit its effort to making digital milling machines. It hopes to design a universal platform that could be easily transformed from a milling machine into a 3D printer/laser, or vice versa, on an as-needed basis.
Today, at the MISiS FabLab the 1.5 production level has been achieved, which means commercial personal digital devices are partially replaced with self-made ones. In the future, the 2.0 level is envisaged, which would be the decisive and complete move to self-replication.