Feeds

Tea, Earl Grey, hot! NASA blows $125k on Star Trek 3D FOOD PRINTER

We all know it'll really be 'Press Control-P for pizza'

Build a business case: developing custom apps

A small company in Austin, Texas, has received a $US125,000 grant from NASA to develop 3D printed food for astronauts.

The challenges are multifold – not least among them producing something palatable out of a printer – but the idea is that with enough development, NASA might be able to come up with something that beats the current rations sent to places like the International Space Station.

Systems & Materials Research Coroporation in Austin Texas has already beaten an easy problem – printing chocolate on a biscuit – but its plan under the NASA grant is more ambitious: a fully-fledged nosh synthesiser, perhaps like the food'n'drink replicators used by Star Trek's Captain Picard and his crew.

The prototype will use a combination of 3D printing and inkjet printing. The inkjet will handle “micronutrients, flavour and smell” while 3D printing will be used for macronutrients (the starch that forms the base of the pizza, along with protein and fat).

Why bother? – because if it worked and didn't send astronauts out of the airlock rather than eat the printed pizza, a working setup would mean that a handful of generic ingredients could be carried on manned spacecraft, rather than completed meals.

SMRC is working with the food science program at North Carolina State University and International Flavors and Fragrances on the project. The proposal's abstract is here. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Gigantic toothless 'DRAGONS' dominated Earth's early skies
Gummy pterosaurs outlived toothy competitors
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
'Leccy racer whacks petrols in Oz race
ELMOFO rakes in two wins in sanctioned race
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
Boffins build CYBORG-MOTHRA but not for evil: For search & rescue
This tiny bio-bot will chew through your clothes then save your life
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
NASA's rock'n'roll shock: ROLLING STONE FOUND ON MARS
No sign of Ziggy Stardust and his band
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.