Material Experience Design | Yasuaki Kakehi Laboratory, The University of Tokyo

Yasuaki Kakehi Laboratory


Rapid Prototyping for Rigid and Reusable Objects using Inflation of Laser-cut Surfaces

Junichi Yamaoka, Ryuma Niiyama and Yasuaki Kakehi

BlowFab is a prototyping method used to create a 2.5-dimensional prototype in a short time by combining laser cutting and blow molding techniques. The user creates adhesive areas and inflatable areas by engraving and cutting multilayered plastic sheets using a laser cutter. These adhesive areas are fused automatically by overlapping two crafted sheets and softening them with a heater. The user can then create hard prototypes by injecting air into the sheets. Objects can be bent in any direction by cutting incisions or engraving a resistant resin. The user can create uneven textures by engraving a pattern with a heat-resistant film.


Junichi Yamaoka, Ryuma Niiyama, and Yasuaki Kakehi. 2017. BlowFab: Rapid Prototyping for Rigid and Reusable Objects using Inflation of Laser-cut Surfaces. In Proceedings of the 30th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology (UIST ’17). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 461-469. (UIST2017 Honorable Mention)

Acknowledgement: JST Kawahara ERATO Universal Information Network Project(万有情報網プロジェクト)