Blurring the lines between materials and machines
Recently, researchers started to engineer not only the outer shape of objects, but also their internal microstructure. Such objects, typically based on 3D cell grids, are also known as metamaterials. Metamaterials have been used, for example, to create materials with soft and hard regions.
Alexandra works on creating materials that integrate mechanical and computational functions, by solely defining their microstructure – their rendition of 'smart matter', but without electronics – and will let us in on her work.
Alexandra is a PhD student at the human-computer-interaction lab at the Hasso Plattner Institute (Potsdam, Germany) of Patrick Baudisch. She is interested in fabricating materials with interesting mechanical properties – also known as metamaterials.