Researchers from MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) have created a super interesting new system, which is capable of building drones, robots and other electronic devices all on its own.
Introducing, the LaserFactory:
MIT's interesting new LaserFactory is a two-part system that uses not just the machine itself, but also software for designing electronic devices. This makes it much easier, as it shows in the video above, to make electronic devices at a much faster rate.
LaserFactory and its software lets you design an electronic device using components from a library, then you have to draw circuit traces and make the appropriate adjustments to your device in the 2D editor. After you've finished the design, the instructions are sent to the LaserFactory hardware and then it will construct your device.
From there, LaserFactory will cut out the shape you've designed, add lines of silver for the circuit traces, place components and cures the silver to complete the device. After that, the device can be turned on and used -- in this case, a mini drone is built by the LaserFactory in the video and then flies right after... pretty incredible stuff.
MIT reiterates that its LaserFactory system can be used for a multitude of things, such as building drones for deliveries or important search and rescue operations. I guess if you needed to have a system deployed somewhere, that could pump out drones all day long on-the-fly would be pretty damn useful.
The system can be used to make other devices such as prototypes for upcoming electronic products, and can even make foldable devices for wearables and foldable smartphones and tablets.