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Meso-Scale Digital Materials: Modular, Reconfigurable, Lattice-Based Structures

[+] Author Affiliations
Benjamin Jenett

MIT, Cambridge, MA

Daniel Cellucci

Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Christine Gregg

UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA

Kenneth Cheung

NASA, Moffett Field, CA

Paper No. MSEC2016-8767, pp. V002T01A018; 11 pages
doi:10.1115/MSEC2016-8767
From:
  • ASME 2016 11th International Manufacturing Science and Engineering Conference
  • Volume 2: Materials; Biomanufacturing; Properties, Applications and Systems; Sustainable Manufacturing
  • Blacksburg, Virginia, USA, June 27–July 1, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: Manufacturing Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4990-3
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME

abstract

We present a modular, reconfigurable system for building large structures. This system uses discrete lattice elements, called digital materials, to reversibly assemble ultralight structures that are 99.7% air and yet maintain sufficient specific stiffness for a variety of structural applications and loading scenarios. Design, manufacturing, and characterization of modular building blocks are described, including struts, nodes, joints, and build strategies. Simple case studies are shown using the same building blocks in three different scenarios: a bridge, a boat, and a shelter. Field implementation and demonstration is supplemented by experimental data and numerical simulation. A simplified approach for analyzing these structures is presented which shows good agreement with experimental results.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME

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