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Cornell Researchers Print 3D Speaker

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Graduate student Apoorva Kiran with his 3D-printed, fully functional loudspeaker.

Researchers at Cornell University say they have successfully used a 3D printer to create all parts of a working loudspeaker.

Credit: Cornell University

Cornell University researchers say they have successfully fabricated a working loudspeaker using a three-dimensional (3D) printer, representing one of the first times a complete electronic device has been printed from scratch.

The speaker's plastic body, conductive coil, and magnet were all printed using a Fab@Home printer, and the speaker was almost ready for use as soon as printing was finished, according to the researchers.

Fab@Home was developed by two Cornell students to help researchers experiment with 3D printing. However, many 3D printers do not have the capability to print with different materials, and fabricating a single device requires the selection of materials that work well together, the researchers note. They also point out that in order to print the conductive coil and copper and plastic from the same printer, different temperatures and curing times were required.

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