3Dsystems create Ekocycle 3D printer that turns Coke bottles into anything
We recently reported on a simple yet genius idea to turn plastic bottles into strong plastic wire and here is yet another way to reuse those empty bottles. Chief creative officer of 3Dsystems and entertainer Will.I.Am has just collaborated with Coca-Cola to create the Ekocycle – a cube shaped 3D printer that uses filament made from recycled 20 oz PET plastic bottles.
The device aims to promote sustainability and eco friendliness by using at least three recycled post consumer plastic bottles as part of the filament in each cartridge. Users can then design and print anything that comes to mind such as bracelets, phone cases and models of their favourite characters.
Will.I.Am explained his goal to, “partner with the most influential brands around the world and use technology, art, style and inspiration to change an entire culture. We will make it cool to recycle, and we will make it cool to make products using recycled materials. This is the beginning of a more sustainable 3D-printed lifestyle. Waste is only waste if we waste it.”
The filament comes in three different colours, red, black and white as well as a ‘natural’ colour, although we’re not quite sure what colour that is yet. The resulted material will be flexible and durable and the use of recycled material still promises similar material properties to that of current 3D printer filaments.
The EKOCYCLE Cube features a color touchscreen with an intuitive user interface and sleek LEDs highlighting prints in action. It is also equipped with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity to send your designs for printing from any WiFi or Bluetooth device.
The Ekocycle printer will arrive on the market for $1,200 but no release on cartridge price yet. They are expected to launch in the second half of 2014.