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The World’s First 3D Printed Car

Produced at Local Motors with the help of Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Cincinnati Incorporated, and several other partners, the Strati is the world’s first 3D printed car. The Strati was created from carbon-reinforced plastic, and while others have used 3D printers to create car parts, this endeavor was completed almost entirely using this space-age technology.

“Everything in the Strati that could be made as part of a single piece of plastic, was. This isn’t your standard milk jug plastic, however. It’s been mixed with carbon fibers for extra strength.

Although plastic might seem like an unusual choice for a car, the American Chemistry Council’s Steve Russell says it’s become an increasingly common component in vehicles. “Carbon fiber reinforced plastics are 50 percent lighter than steel, and 30 percent lighter than aluminum,” says Russell, “but it has 12 times higher energy absorption.”

That means big bonuses for safety and fuel efficiency, which has encouraged car manufacturers to make more and more of their vehicles out of the stuff. Today, carbon-fiber polymers may account for as much as 50 percent of a car’s volume (while contributing to only 10 percent of its weight). It’s also helped car makers to comply with rising federal emissions standards.” – Brian Fung, The Washington Post

Check out this time-lapse video showing this magnificent creation.

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