Friday, 05 Aug, 2011 Technology

Sulsa - World's First Plane Created Using 3D Printer


Making objects using 3D printers is not new today. Recently a group of researchers from the University of Southampton managed to come up with the world's first 3D printed aircraft.

The team also managed to make the plane is just one week. They also carried out the first test flight of the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). The trial took place at a site north of Stonehenge.

It would be interesting to note that the cost of the project was GBP5,000 and the name of the plane is Sulsa (short for Southampton University Laser Sintered Aircraft).

In order to make the plane more lightweight researchers decided to design it without undercarriage. They also equipped their aircraft with an electric-motor, making it eco-friendly. The wingspan of the UAV is 1.5 meters and it was printed out using hard nylon provided by 3T RPD, a company from Greenham Common, Berkshire.

According to the group of researchers led by Andy Keane and Jim Scanlan, 3D printing could bring a revolution in the field of aircraft design. They believe that in the future an unmanned plane might be printed out and built in just a few days, reports NewScientist.

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