A piece of space in your pocket: the results of the experiment
More than a month has passed since the day we launched the project for 3D printing of modem covers with particles of a real meteorite. Time to take stock of this unusual experiment.
Cosmonautics Day as part of Yota FutureProofwe launched a new experiment: when buying our 4G modem online or at the Atrium shopping center, you could order a cover for it made on a 3D printer. In a specially designed online designer, anyone could create a three-dimensional model of the case with a unique inscription - for example, with his nickname or name. After confirming the order, the cover was sent for printing, without additional processing of layouts in a special editor for 3D modeling. The material contained particles of a real meteorite, found in 2005 in the Magadan region. The fragment belongs to the type of iron-stone meteorites and, presumably, is a fragment of the Seymchan meteorite. For two weeks, at the Atrium shopping center in Moscow, at the Yota sales point, you could see a meteorite used to create 3D covers.
As in all Yota FutureProof experiments, we were interested in the opportunity to use advanced technologies in everyday life and business. During the 3D printing project, we wanted to find out whether modern technologies and personalized accessories created with their help can influence the demand for devices.
During the month of the experiment, 9,541 unique sketch of 3D covers were created, users spent 239 man-hours on design (an average of 1.5 minutes for each layout). During the experiment, almost 73 kilograms of material was used - a composite with meteorite powder. 473 covers were printed, each being created for about 4 hours (total duration of work was 1,892 man-hours, about 78 days). In the process of creating a cover, the direct printing stage took about an hour: during this time, the printer printed an article about 25 mm high. Then the cover was cleaned with compressed air and impregnated with special glue for strength. In the experiment, one 3D printer was used, on which at the same time 2-3 covers were produced on average. The cost price of each cover was 1260 rubles.
The covers were printed using CJP technology: first a very thin layer of composite powder is applied, then it is impregnated with dye and a binder. And so layer by layer. Each case consists of approximately 270 layers. The final touch is the impregnation of the product with cyanoacrylic adhesive to increase strength.
Here's what it looks like:
The printed cover was cleaned of composite residues:
Rinsing and processing with cyanoacrylate:
A meteorite fragment was crushed in a crusher to get a sufficiently small fraction: The
cover is ready!
The interest of our customers in unique customized accessories is confirmed by several thousand created designs of 3D-covers. In our opinion, in this experiment, users were primarily attracted by the use of meteorite particles and, of course, the ability to print a cover with their own unique design. We made sure that despite the high cost of production, 3D-printing can be effectively used for business, and we are already working on new ways to integrate modern technologies into business processes.