UWE Bristol's world-leading ceramic 3D printing to feature on 'Gadget Show'

Issue date: 27 March 2014


Examples of 3D printing

The Centre for Fine Print Research CFPR, at UWE Bristol, is to feature in an episode of Channel 5's The Gadget Show to be broadcast at 7.00pm on Monday 31 March 2014. The broadcast coincides with the launch of a new commercialisation initiative from CFPR.

Gadget Show presenter, Jon Bentley, interviewed Professor Stephen Hoskins and David Huson of CFPR who explained and demonstrated their world leading research in ceramic 3 D printing.

The Gadget Show is the UK's favourite technology show broadcast on Channel 5. The programme currently receives an average of one million viewers per episode, approximately half a million unique users to the website each week and the show is sold to well over 100 countries worldwide.

Stephen Hoskins says, “It was great to meet Jon and to have the opportunity to show our research to a wide audience through this popular technology programme. Our work in 3D printing of porcelain for tableware is world leading, and is based on our patented material developed in CFPR. 3D printing of ceramics is of special relevance to artists, designers and to the tableware industry, but it is also of interest to a wider public, as it is a new technology with the potential to develop the way ceramic tableware is produced.”

A spin out company, called 'Argillasys', (from the Latin word for potters clay) is due to be launched by the team at CFPR with funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council. The new company aims to commercialise the 3D printing of porcelain. It will be co-owned by the University and will be the world's first company to print 3D porcelain.

Argillasys will offer a bureau service for designers where they will be able to bring high quality designs that could be 3 D printed in ceramics. It will also offer specialist prototyping of tableware for the industry and an on-line shop selling 3D printed ceramics.

Professor Hoskins explained, “The ceramic material developed at CFPR for use in 3D printing is both aesthetically pleasing and also a functional material, unlike the typical prototyping materials commonly used in 3D printers. The ceramic material can produce items of a high quality both in terms of design and also in terms of function – it can create elegant tableware and ornamental ceramics. Because of its aesthetic qualities, it appeals to designers and artists who want to create lasting products that are also beautiful. The process, including glazing, firing and decorating of ceramic material takes several days to complete, but will enable faster turnaround times for new product designs for the tableware industry.”

Professor Stephen Hoskins is Hewlett Packard Chair of Fine Print and Director of the Centre for fine Print Research. David Huson is a Senior Research Fellow at CFPR.

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