A 3-D printer the size of a small room that can produce pieces up to 6 feet by 8 feet by 8 feet made of a 50-50 mix of plastic resins and wood cellulose, at the rate of 110 pounds an hour, is being installed at the University of Maine, with hopes that it will open new markets for wood products and maybe help the state’s boat-building industry.
The Portland Press Herald has a story about it, right here.
One of the first products created by the printer was a mold that boat builders use to manufacture hulls. Combining elements of wood with plastic in the printer adds strength to the final product, Dagher said, and using a printer to create molds saves time and allows easier and quicker modifications. The mold is also recyclable.
The project cost about $20 million, according to a press release from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which developed the system.