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Chocobot is the first made-in-India commercial chocolate 3D printer
Posted by 3DP4E
FOOD
GLOBAL

By Alec | 3ders.com

As the hotbed of 3D printing is still solidly located in the West and China, we are always very happy to hear about 3D printing businesses popping up elsewhere. And in that respect, India is definitely up-and-coming, as a remarkable number of startups have been appearing in that subcontinent. However, few have yet been as successful as the Bangalore-based Global 3D Labs. While that company has had quite a bit of success over the past year, they are already back for more as they are about to release India’s first commercially available chocolate 3D printer: the Chocobot, a multifunctional tool capable of directly 3D printing dark, white, milk and other chocolates.

To give a little background, Global 3D Labs was founded by four entrepreneurs who saw a distinct lack of 3D printing innovation in India and an overly strong reliance on foreign exports. Gopal Krishna, Aviral Kedia (both from MIT, Manipal), Manish Amin, Shreyas Kudva (both from MITE, Manglore) therefore set out to develop their own India-made 3D printer, which would grow to become the Pramaan 3D printer, a sturdy and decent plug-and-play machine with SD card support. The company has since grown out to an eight-member team and has been very successful in its home country. Specializing in 3D printers for professionals, startups, researchers and students, they are frequently seen throughout the 3D printing community offering seminars, custom solutions and more.

‘We have supplied 3D Printers across India and have reputed clients like Indian Railways, Bremer Engineering India, Innovation & Knowledge Park, Central Manufacturing Technology India, National Chemical Laboratories and more,’ they tell us.

– Gopal Krishna, Aviral Kedia, Manish Amin, Shreyas Kudva

Aside from their upcoming Chocobot, they currently have a repertoire of four products: the Pramaan V2, the V3, the Pramaan Mini and DIY kits.

‘The Pramaan V3 is our latest FDM 3D printer which comes equipped with a 25x25x25 cm3 build volume. It also has a dual extruder capable of printing with two different filaments simultaneously. It comes with the octoprint ability which can be used to 3D print over Wifi and the internet,’ they reveal. ‘It also sports an onboard camera which can be used to get a live feed of the print. Pramaan V3 comes with a Filament sensor as well, which notifies the user when the filament is entangled or about to get over. Connectivity options include Cloud connectivity, SD card, WiFi and LCD screen.’

– Gopal Krishna, Aviral Kedia, Manish Amin, Shreyas Kudva

This machine is also ready for release.

Following that success – and establishing an India-only manufacturing process – the team looked for some new options to expand their market.

‘After coming up with Pramaan V2 we thought of experimenting with food printing. And what better food article than Chocolate! So after months of experimentation and R&D, we came up with Chocobot,’ the team tells us. ‘We have designed it in such a way that we, ourselves would like to purchase and use it.’

– Gopal Krishna, Aviral Kedia, Manish Amin, Shreyas Kudva

And indeed, it looks like a remarkable 3D printer. While it won’t be fully unveiled until next week (at the 3D Print UAE Exhibition and Conference in Dubai), the Indian team already revealed that it is capable of 3D printing just about any form of chocolate through a series of different syringes.

‘Not only can it print directly with chocolate but also print using poly-carbonates which can then used as a mold with liquid chocolate. The liquid chocolate can then be frozen in the mold and the mold can when be removed. It boasts of a build volume of 18x18x18 cm3 and has a sturdy and robust build,’ they reveal.

– Gopal Krishna, Aviral Kedia, Manish Amin, Shreyas Kudva

With an operating temperature of 34 degrees centigrade, modular head options and a 60 ml syringe, you can do some serious chocolate 3D printing.

Aside from that, it largely operates through the same principles as their Pramaan 3D printer and with the same software, though obviously extruding something vastly different. They estimate that it takes about 40 minutes to complete one plate of chocolates.

‘This could be the next big thing. We love 3D printing and everybody loves food,’ Gopal Krishna explains.

– Gopal Krishna

Expected to be released next week, only one thing remains to be revealed: the price tag. With taxes of 14.5%, the total price comes up to Rs. 91600 (or approximately $1440) – definitely interesting enough to draw some attention in India and beyond.

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