Autosaw: MIT’s Robot Carpenters Create Custom flat-pack Furniture
MIT’s CSAIL researchers have developed an autosaw system minimising the risk of injury when creating custom furniture. the technology employs the use of robotic carpenters that cut the parts before the designer puts them together.
video by MITCSAIL
CSAIL‘s aim is to apply computer numerical control (CNC) technology, used in larger scale machinery, at points in production where many carpenters use chop-saws, jigsaws and other hand tools. CNC converts designs into numbers that are then fed to specially programmed tools to execute.
using the existing CAD system onshape with an interface of design templates, users can customize their furniture for things like size, sturdiness, and aesthetics. once the design is finalized, it’s sent to the robots to assist in the cutting process using the jigsaw and chop-saw.
autosaw can be used to create carpenter-designed templates for chairs, desks, and other furniture. CSAIL hopes it will eventually work for projects as large as a deck or a porch.
‘our aim is to democratize furniture-customization,’ says adriana schulz, co-leader on the project. ‘we’re trying to open up a realm of opportunities so users aren’t bound to what they’ve bought at IKEA. instead, they can make what best fits their needs.’