The Salzburg Center for Smart Materials is a multidisciplinary research collaboration to develop new smart materials and applications. We are collaborating with material scientists and wood engineers to define material needs and envision applications for future smart materials. This topic is part of a stream of research investigating how smart materials can impact workflows in digital personal fabrication.

We are collaborating with the wood engineers at the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences to tinker on fabrication methods and applications for 3D printing shape-changing objects. This topic is currently at an exploration phase, so we are looking for a student that is open to engage in discussing ideas rather than simply implementing a predefined task.

We sketched the concept of a software application that allows users to define the shape-changing behavior of a 3D model inside a CAD software (e.g. Blender, Rhino). So you would implement an application that communicates between the CAD software (3D modeling) and the 3D printer. Your code will implement the calculations and parameters (defined by the research team) that allow for shape change in objects printed with the developed filaments. The application will also generate the instructions for the 3D printer (GCODE).

We are looking for a student with solid programming knowledge and willing to work on a dynamic project. The dynamic aspect comes in the fact that you will be involved in further developing the concept described above. We will evaluate which CAD application and programming languages fits our needs. You are not required to have 3D modeling or 3D printing experience but since these are essential to the project, be ready to take the time to learn (with our support, of course – we are also learning).

Type of Student

  • Bachelor or Master Student

Required Skills

  • Software development (language/frameworks to be discussed, e.g., python, c++)
  • Interest in 3D printing

Desired skills

  • General knowledge of 3D modeling (CAD language and parameters, basic geometry)