JASON RICHARDS, OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JASON RICHARDS, OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LABORATORY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Robot hand, coloured image. Electron-beam additive manufacturing at Oak Ridge National Laboratory produced this fully functional robotic hand and the mesh ball it is holding, both made from titanium powder. Additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, creates objects by the successive addition of layers of material. A number of techniques are available. The one used here is also known as electron beam melting (EBM). Data is read from a computer-aided design (CAD) model, and layers of titanium powder are melted and fused to form the required structure. The first commercial 3D printers were marketed from around 2003. Photographed in 2011.
Model release not required. Property release not required.