The ultimate iron chef – when 3D printers invade the kitchen

UOW Research Blog

By Robert Gorkin(ACES – UOW) and Susan Dodds, University of Tasmania

Printing food seems more like an idea based in Star Trek rather than in the average home. But recent advances in 3D printing (known formally as additive manufacturing) are driving the concept closer to reality. With everything from printed metal airplane wings to replacement organs on the horizon, could printed food be next? And how will we feel when it’s served at the table?

From sundaes to space food

In some ways we have “printed” food for decades. Think of making a sundae using a self-dispensing ice-cream machine. Building by extruding material through a nozzle is quite similar to how certain 3D printers, called fused deposition modellers (FDM) work today. While FDM is primarily used for prototyping plastics, the technology has been applied in culinary arts for years.

Researchers at Cornell pioneered some of this work, adapting…

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