Swarm of Microsystem Particles for Multi-axial Morphogenic Rapid Prototyping

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Standard rapid prototyping is usually performed via layered manufacturing techniques in which growth of the object usually follows an axis predetermined by the CAD model and the preferred direction of manufacture. This paper presents the theoretical foundations and preliminary experimental results for a new 3D construction technique based on primitive elements. This Multi-Axial Morphogenic (M.A.M.) Rapid Prototyping technique involves a swarm of intelligent, mobile, partially autonomous particles (chunxels) that can assemble into arbitrary, but pre-determined, three-dimensional shapes. A host computer tracks assembly progress and, through wireless communications, broadcasts shape specifications and assembly status to the chunxels. In addition to the theoretical foundations, a computer simulation of the control algorithms for particle behavior, as well as preliminary experimental results are presented.


Copyright 2005 Institute of Industrial Engineers

A link to full text has been provided for authorized subscribers.

Publication Title

Proceedings of the Industrial Engineering Research Conference, IERC 2005

Published Citation

Stiebitz, P.H., Carrano, A.L., Taylor, J.B., Plaz, C.R., and Mestry, S. Swarm of microsystem particles for multi-axial morphogenic rapid prototyping. Industrial Engineering Research Conference, IERC 2005. May 14-18, 2005. Atlanta, Georgia

Peer Reviewed