ROBOCHOP Lets You Design and Create Your Own Sculptures
A German design studio Kram/Weisshaar has created a giant robotic arm that sculpts foam cubes into furniture pieces in a matter of minutes.
Stockholm-based Reed Kram and Munich designer Clemens Weisshaar have designed, coded and built this pop-up robotic plant called ROBOCHOP, currently being set up at Hanover for Code_n. As of today, the designers are inviting online users anywhere in the world to harness the power of one of four robotic arms.
Users can make use of a specially crafted web app and design their own objects out of a prefabricated 40 x 40 x 40cm polystyrene foam. The app available on the project website provides interface for users to create a set of instructions for the robot, by making hand gestures on a touch screen.
ROBOCHOP is equipped with a needle gripper at the end to pick up and hold foam blocks. A hot cutting wire is mounted in front of the robot’s pedestal, which it uses to precisely slice sections from the cube and create the object, with the aid of additional sensors monitoring wire tension and other factors.
Using the Robochop installation, users can make anything, ranging from furniture designs to abstract sculptures. “People have made everything from elephants and animals to furniture and art,” said Clemens Weisshaar at a London preview.
Starting from today until 20 March, both online users and on-site visitors to the CeBit 2015 IT fair in Hannover will be able to submit their designs to be chopped and sculpted by ROBOCHOP. Only 2,000 lucky individuals will get the chance to have their custom objects packaged and shipped to them free-of-charge.
The project follows the 2010 Outrace installation where users were allowed to take over robots to create messages in light. With Robochop, the designers want to take users from ipad, to robot, so that they can manufacture real world objects rather than media.
“ROBOCHOP envisions a not so distant future where intelligent systems empower anyone to directly engage with heavy industrial manufacturing technologies,” the Robochop website reads. “By removing all obstacles and intermediaries in the supply chain anyone can design and produce the exact object they want.”