DSM Somos: "UFO 3"
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Design for Competition Client: DSM Somos has been actively involved in developing rapid prototyping materials since the 1980’s, and introduced the first commercial stereolithography (SLA) resin. Aim: An international competition was held for professional designers and students under the theme 'Safety in Travel'. The competition aimed to better utilise available rapid prototyping (RP) technologies and explore the design freedom permitted from such technologies. The competition was sponsored by DSM Somos, the magazine New Design, and Time Compression Technologies (TCT). Using the theme 'Safety in Travel' PDR focussed on the 2003 Government report 'Advice on Travel-Related Deep Vein Thrombosis', which stated: 'All air passengers, even those at greatest risk can reduce the chances of getting DVT by doing…simple exercises'. The design team at PDR developed a product that would assist individuals complete such exercises. Designed to alleviate the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) for long distance travel, PDR's entry 'U.F.O 3' demonstrated the functional and creative freedom made possible by advanced materials technologies. Using a DSM Somos optically clear and humidity resistant resin, PDR developed a single component exercise device that incorporated sockets with rotating spheres, unsupported sections and articulation between the base and the top, allowing flexibility when pressure is applied. The final design could only be made in one part by utilising the SLA process. Lessons learned through this research have facilitated subsequent research into design for direct manufacture using layer additive technologies. The competition was judged on: a) relevance to the theme b) visual interest and impact c) originality, functionality and complexity d) interesting use of RP technologies in comparison to traditional manufacturing processes. PDR's entry 'U.F.O 3' won the International Design Competition Grand Prize: Professional Category.
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