The combination of open-source software and hardware provide technically feasible methods to create low-cost, highly-customized scientific research equipment. Open-source 3-D printers have proven useful for fabricating scientific tools. Here the capabilities of an open-source 3-D printer are expanded to become a highly-flexible scientific platform. An automated low-cost 3-D motion control platform is presented having the capacity to perform scientific applications including:
- 3-D printing of scientific hardware
- Laboratory auto-stirring
- Measuring and probing
- Automated fluid handling
- Shaking and mixing
The open-source 3-D platform not only facilities routine research while radically reducing the cost, but it also inspires the creation of a diverse array of custom instruments that can be shared and replicated digitally throughout the world to drive down the cost of research and education further.
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The 3-D printing capabilities of the platform are comparable to other delta RepRaps. The system has a circular build area with a radius of 126 mm and a build height of 100 mm.
In stationary mode, the substrate moves beneath the head.