Centre for Fine Print Research University of the West of England Centre for Fine Print Research
 

David Huson

Current Research

“Solid Free-form Fabrication in Fired Ceramic as a Design Aid for Concept Modelling the Ceramic Industry"

Awarding body: Arts and Humanities Research Council
awarded to:
Hoskins, Stephen
researcher participants:
Huson, David and Walters, Peter
project partner:
Denby Pottery
image (right):
Prototype design for 3D object, Peter Walters
Project duration: 31/03/2011 - 30/03/2012


Project details:
During the AHRC funded three-year research project ‘The Fabrication of Three Dimensional Art and Craft Artefacts through Virtual Digital Construction and Output’ the investigators Huson and Hoskins developed a patented ceramic material. Whilst there are several research groups working internationally in this field, the CFPR team are currently at the forefront of these developments with a method which uses 3D computer aided design (3D CAD) software to design an object on a computer and print a model directly in a ceramic material to be subsequently fired, glazed and decorated.

The primary aim of new project is to prove the commercial viability of 3D printed ceramic bodies as a design tool for concept modelling of tableware and whiteware for the ceramic industry. A further aim is to investigate ceramic firing supports and their advantages in the production of one-off ceramic design concept models. Using a support, a ceramic 3D printed object can be created and fired without losing its shape in the firing. The ability to print directly in a compatible ceramic material that can be glazed and decorated would be a quantum leap in this process.

Title: Proof of Concept for 3D Ceramic Printing

Funding: UWE/SouthWest Regional Development Agency/HEIF
Awarded to: Hoskins, Stephen and Huson, David
Project duration: 2010-11

Project details:

Dave Huson and Steve Hoskins have invented a composition and method which enables the 3D printing of ceramic artefacts. The new process is not only within the specific requirements of the industry but can achieve the creation of artefacts previously impossible to achieve in ceramics. In addition, by using state-of-the-art 3D scanning technologies, the shape of a hand-made model or maquette can be captured and digitally developed, so that the artist’s unique creative touch and craft skill can still be included in the process of production. This project will allow further development of the ceramic body composition to improve the technology and make it more attractive to commercial end-users.
Advantages of the method:
· Enables us to make ceramic forms which we are not able to make using any other techniques.
· Quicker - currently there is a long process using several stages of moulds to get a consistent form for a ceramic shape, especially attractive for production of bespoke artefacts.
· by using state-of-the-art 3D scanning technologies, the shape of a hand-made model or maquette can be captured and digitally developed, so that the artist’s unique creative touch and craft skill can still be included in the process of production.
· This new process allows the artist to develop the object digitally on screen and then produce the finished work directly in “real” ceramic materials

Title: Edible 3D Printing

Funding: UWE early career researcher starter grant 2010/11
Awarded to: Deborah Southerland
Collaborators: Peter Walters and David Huson

Edible 3D Printing is a ‘proof of concept’ research project that will bring the versatility and precision of the digital world into the realm of food and edible products. The project seeks to explore and test the technical capabilities of food-based materials (eg: sugars, starch powders, alcohol and chocolate) within 3D printing and rapid prototyping technologies.

The team are undertaking tests on three main production and manufacture techniques for technical feasibility and creative potential:

1. Direct free form fabrication, using powdered food mixes within the Z-Corp powder binder 3D printer.
2. Using heated syringe extruders and chocolate based products within the ‘Rap Man’ rapid prototyping system.
3. 3D printing of resin and/or plaster master models, from which silicone or vacuum formed plastic moulds will be produced, for casting single or multiple food based forms.

The potential of 3D printing has been under philosophical discussion for some time, but conventional materials are often limited in terms of functional and visual qualities. Food based products could provide an exciting alternative with significant commercial potential in the form of delicious delectable edible objects. It is anticipated that these fabrication processes will allow for the creation of intricate edible forms that would be unachievable through conventional cooking and food preparation techniques.