Created by the team at MIT Media Lab's Meditated Matter Group, Fiberbots is a digital fabrication framework fusing cooperative swarm robotic manufacturing with abilities to generate highly sophisticated material structures. The framework can enable design and digital fabrication of large-scale structures with high spatial resolution leveraging mobile fabrication nodes, or robotic ‘agents’.
Some of nature’s most successful organisms collaborate in a swarm fashion. Nature’s builders leverage hierarchical structures in order to control and optimize multiple material properties. Spiders, for instance, spin protein fibers to weave silk webs with tunable local and global material properties, adjusting their material composition and fiber placement to create strong yet flexible structures optimized to capture prey. Other organisms, such as bees, ants, and termites cooperate to rapidly build structures much larger than themselves.