Surface Design Show 2022

Surface Spotlight LIVE

Manchester Metropolitan University’s 3D additive and digital manufacturing centre, PrintCity, is showcasing two Interreg NW Europe funded projects at the Surface Design Show’s Surface Spotlight Live 2022, TRANSFORM-CE and CIRMAP. Aligned with the show’s theme, ‘Sense of Place’, both projects explore material and process innovation to support the transition to a more sustainable, circular economy. 

TRANSFORM-CETRANSFORMing single use plastic waste and creating a Circular Economy business model

TRANSFORM-CE is a €6.93million project led by Manchester Metropolitan University. Bringing together partners from the UK, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, the project is transforming single use plastic waste into value-added products using innovative technologies, additive manufacturing and intrusion-extrusion moulding. 

As part of this, researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University have created a range of recycled additive manufacturing filaments from everyday plastic waste streams, including PET from used drinks bottles, ABS from recycled car interiors, and PLA from used coffee cups and lids. They are now working with businesses and other stakeholders to take up these recycled filaments, adopt additive manufacturing, redesign products and develop new, circular business models. 

A range of example products designed by PrintCity staff and students and manufactured using TRANSFORM-CE filaments are on show at the Surface Design Show – Surface Spotlight LIVE. 

Auxetic Tile

Jack Thomas, Technical Specialist, PrintCity

This auxetic tile design is printed using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament. Although a solid material, the geometric design provides flexibility. 

Architectural Model

Emma Rothwell, Technical Officer, PrintCity

This architectural model is printed using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in orange and black. 

Textured Box

Emma Rothwell, Technical Officer, PrintCity

This textured box comprises two parts, which fit perfectly together with the join hidden between the joins in the spheres. It is printed using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in natural. 

3D Textile Print

Jessica Robinson, Technical Apprentice, PrintCity

This 3D textile print has been printed directly onto a translucent net fabric using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in orange and red.  

Lithographic Tile

Ed Keefe, Senior Lecturer in Digital Design and Manufacturing, PrintCity

This is a lithographic tile printed using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in natural. The semi-translucent material appears to show a textured surface until a light is shone behind it, revealing an intricate pattern. These designs were created from Ed Keefe’s own photographs, which were converted into three dimensional designs.

Inhabit (Insect hotel)

Emily Bagshaw, BA Textiles in Practice, Mixed-media and Embroidery (Alumni), Manchester Metropolitan University 

This is an insect hotel printed in TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in black. This forms part of the Inhabit series, which explores ways in which surfaces within the built environment can be made to house other species, helping to spur increases in biodiversity within our cities.

Biomimetic Leaf

Mark Chester, Product Development Specialist, PrintCity Network

The three-dimensional design for this biomimetic leaf was created by scanning a real leaf with a 3D scanner. The design was then printed using TRANSFORM-CE recycled PET filament in orange. 

Raspberry Pi Housing

Gary Buller, Technical Team Leader, PrintCity

This is a custom housing for a Raspberry Pi, incorporating a textured surface to be compatible with attachable plastic parts. The design is printed in TRANSFORM-CE recycled filament in red.

Would you like to try our TRANSFORM-CE recycled filaments for yourself? Request a free sample spool here

CIRMAP: CIrcular economy via customisable furniture with Recycled MAterials for public Places

CIRMAP is a €6.98million project in which Manchester Metropolitan University is a key partner. Bringing together stakeholders from France, the UK, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, the project is focused on establishing recycled fine aggregate (RFA) as a substitute for sharp sand in concrete 3D printing. The RFA materials are derived by crushing building and demolition wastes, such as concrete and brick, providing a potential carbon saving. As the dredging of virgin sharp sand can result in the disruption of fragile marine ecosystems, its replacement with RFA also presents potential ecological benefits. 

As part of this, researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University have procured two concrete 3D printers and have begun experimenting with different concrete formulas incorporating RFA. Over the course of the project, several examples of urban, memorial and garden furniture will be 3D printed from RFA concrete. 

Early, small-scale product samples have been created using the concrete 3D printers at Manchester Metropolitan University and are on show at the Surface Design Show – Surface Spotlight LIVE. 

Surface Design Show 2022 - The PrintCity Blog - Manchester Metropolitan University

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