Chris White Reveals Insights on Business and Industry for 3d Printing Paris France
What do you do?
I’m part of the design team responsible for the CEL Robox micro-manufacturing platform. Robox is a product designed for designing and creating products/projects in your own home or office. We have designed it to be at home on any desk, with sleek styling, high quality materials and a compact size. Using a removable head system, the platform can be used to perform a wide variety of manufacturing tasks starting with 3D printing of a wide range of polymers, with new heads capable of stylus cutting, paste extrusion (silicones,ceramics, foodstuffs etc.) and laser engraving all in the pipeline. The concept is one of modular expansion – the platform can be continually upgraded with new functionality, and all models of Robox will accept these new modules as development continues.
What do you see as the biggest opportunity in your industry?
I am very lucky to be working in such a fast-paced industry like 3D printing – every day there seems to be some new piece of research published, or a new technology or material which opens up new applications for the process. We’re constantly striving to stay ahead of the curve and make the most of these advances as they appear, making Robox the most advanced and comprehensive platform on the market.
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What impact will changes in your industry have on consumers? the world?
This has been discussed in a huge number of articles, some of them hype, some of them fact, but here at Robox we genuinely believe that 3D printing technology will change the way we think, create, reuse and reinvent technology as it develops. It’s exciting to be on the forefront of what many are calling the “3rd Industrial Revolution”, bringing manufacturing down in scale and heading towards mass customisation, localised manufacturing and the shipping of raw materials rather than finished products. Imagine a future where waste plastic materials can be easily collected, processed and re-manufactured into essential products, particularly in the developing world where waste water bottles could become a water pump or a wind turbine in a matter of hours.
What is your biggest goal right now?
We are striving to produce the most reliable, highest quality 3D printer in our price range and to develop its functionality still further with new designs for heads still in the pipeline. We want Robox to be the most advanced and comprehensive micro-manufacturing platform available, and we’re particularly excited about getting it into the hands of the right people – the makers, designers, tinkerers and future architects of our world – the kids! We think that the most important market for our products is education, it’s amazing to see a child’s mind come alive when they become aware of the potential of the technology.
What kind of support or types of people do you need to accelerate your success?
We are extremely fortunate to work with a great manufacturer that helps us to produce Robox. They help us to turn our ideas and designs into products which can be mass-produced, providing with us with a wide range of experience from injection moulding and tooling, to safety considerations and quality control. That and my boss, Chris Elsworthy – between us, we are responsible for the hardware design for Robox, and he never ceases to amaze with his ingenuity and understanding of mechanical design. I’m still very grateful for the opportunity to work on such a great product with talented like-minded colleagues.
What makes you or your work different from everybody else?
I think probably diversity – my job is incredibly varied. Working in a small company means we all have to cover a wide range of subjects in order to produce the final product. This means I’ve been involved in a huge range of projects relating to Robox including marketing functions (e.g. writing our first Kickstarter campaign, exhibitions, packaging design), the user manual, hardware design and materials research, software UX design, technical support and training, as well as liaising with our manufacturing partners and contractors over production issues and quality control to ensure our products are performing as intended in our now global market.
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