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Sunday, May 7 • 9:30am - 10:00am
Prototyping a Polymer Stretching Machine in the Polsky Center Fab Lab LIMITED

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Limited Capacity seats available

Learn about how you can use the prototyping process and digital fabrication tools to develop devices for scientific research and communication - no experience necessary! We'll discuss a case study from the Polsky Center Fab Lab at the University of Chicago and talk about how it applies to projects that can be created in any makerspace.

The Fab Lab facility operated by the University of Chicago seeks to educate students and the community about state-of-the-art digital fabrication, including 3D printing, for the purpose of prototyping for entrepreneurship and innovation. It offers courses, mentoring, and access to professional grade equipment. Last summer, three local high school students interning with the Institute for Molecular Engineering also learned fundamental concepts of design and prototyping. The project, co-supervised by a faculty member at the University of Chicago and a mentor from the Fab Lab, consisted of creating a custom device to stretch polymer films by a small, precise amount. Using the Fab Lab’s resources, they 3D printed custom gears, laser cut an electronics enclosure, controlled a stepper motor with an Arduino, and soldered circuits. They learned about the real-world process of prototyping and iteration. At the end of the summer, they had a successful device that could be used in the Lab. That device is now being used routinely for advanced research purposes in professional settings, and it has been copied by other laboratories and researchers seeking to pursue advanced materials characterization.

avatar for Elizabeth Koprucki

Elizabeth Koprucki

Presenter, University of Chicago - Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Elizabeth Koprucki is Assistant Director of Fab Lab & Design at the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Chicago. She manages the Fab Lab, a state-of-the-art space for digital fabrication and rapid prototyping. She led the build-out and design of... Read More →

Sunday May 7, 2017 9:30am - 10:00am EDT
Meeting Room A