Students and faculty worked together to make a working 3D-printed Iron Man suit for the Discovery Channel's new show, Savage Builds.
Students at Colorado’s School of Mines got to live out childhood dreams when they were part of building a real-life, functioning Iron Man suit. The school was approached Adam Savage, who hosted MythBusters from 2003 to 2016, now has a new show, Savage Builds, on the Discovery Channel.
When he was on campus to deliver a homecoming lecture, Savage got a chance to tour the facilities and that included the 3D Engineering lab. Savage was interested in what could be built there, and a few weeks later, his production team approached the school about building the suit for the show.
Savage did not want a mere costume, or a simply a 3D-printed suit of armor. No, what he wanted was a true to the Marvel design, printed from titanium, that also happened to be bulletproof, and oh yeah, it needed to fly.
Craig Brice, director of the advanced manufacturing program for Colorado School of Mines, was the team lead on the build and he, along with a team of student volunteers, accepted the challenge to bring the Iron Man suit from CGI into reality. There was no payment given for the work, and all hours put into the project were on a volunteer basis.
The School of Mines team had to get the plans for the suit from Marvel Studios, taking those designs and making them into something that they could print – and be lightweight enough for a real person to wear. With 250 individually printed parts, including a 3D-printed transparent ceramic disc designed to represent the arc reactor in Iron Man’s chest, the suit was constructed with a plastic 3D-printed skeleton of sorts underneath the titanium.
Here is a peek at the suit from Savage's YouTube Channel:
Rumor has it that the suit really works; guess we will have to tune in to see. Savage Builds premieres Friday, June 14, on the Discovery Channel at 10 p.m. (ET).
Adam Savage shared a look at the suit on Twitter:
Hey, did you guys know my new show, #SavageBuilds, premieres ONE WEEK FROM TODAY at 10p E/P on @ScienceChannel? Yes! It'll be right after @BattleBots on Wednesday, June 12! I'm SO EXCITED FOR YOU GUYS TO SEE IT! pic.twitter.com/ilOmbAtkXw— Adam Savage (@donttrythis) June 5, 2019
The team from School of Mines helped with the design, printing, and construction of the suit, with help from some offsite 3D printing done in partnership with Electrical Optical Systems, a German company with a North American company in Austin, Texas.
Here's a little video from the School of Mines about the suit:
We will certainly be watching on Friday night to see the suit, and what Colorado’s own engineers helped make possible. How about you, will you be tuning in? What do you think about the Colorado School of Mines helping make science fiction a reality? Let us know in the comments below.