Projects at think[box]


Realistic Anatomy Models for Medical Training April 4, 2017

A training gap was identified in the anesthesiology field regarding bronchoscopy and lung isolation. Turning Mode - a Cleveland-based health-tech startup - prototyped these Tracheo-Bronchial models using 3D printers at think[box] to attempt to solve this training gap. The models were presented at Lung Isolation Workshops at Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic in Q1-2017. TurningMode is now developing additional models as well as videos and training aids to assist with the usage of the anatomy models.


Jorge Zapata -

Thermocast 3D Topological Map March 28, 2017

Undergraduate mathematics and computer science major Brian Johnson and mathematics faculty member Silvia Saccon developed a set of in-class activities to help Calculus III students strengthen their geometric understanding of multivariable calculus. Using 3D printing at think[box], they built translucent models of a French mountain region. Calculus III students used these models, together with 2D topographical maps, to explore concepts in 3D space, and visualize surfaces and connections to 2D representations. This project is part of the Active Learning+ Initiative sponsored by the CWRU [U]Tech Teaching + Learning Technologies Team.


Brian Johnson -
Silvia Saccon -

Twisted Tower March 28, 2017

Twisted Tower, a "modular" origami structure first designed by Japanese origami artist Mihoko Tachibana, shows unique structural and geometrical properties that allow bending, twisting, and linear motions. 

Researchers at the Distributed Intelligence and Robotics Lab at CWRU aim to create novel mechanisms inspired by this structure, and substitute 3D printed modules for traditional mechanical components used in robotics. 

Their latest work was featured at the 2017 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2017), as well as on various online newspapers.




Prof. Kiju Lee -


AIMbot March 22, 2017

AIMbot (Automated Inventory Management Robot) is a robot designed to autonomously store and retrieve packages inside of a warehouse. It operates using an omnidirectional mecanum drivetrain, a dual scissor lift, and a 5-axis articulated arm with a suction gripper. The platform's modular architecture allows it to also be configured for custom applications. Designed by Wyatt Slifcak, the first prototype was made at Think[box].


Wyatt Slifcak -

SnoreCoach March 20, 2017

SnoreCoach monitors your sleep position during the night. It communicates with an app called SnoreTrack (iOS and Android versions available), which listens to you while you sleep and analyzes your snore patterns to look for Obstructive Sleep Apnea. If you are snoring and are on your back, SnoreTrack sends a signal back to the SnoreCoach telling it to vibrate. A good percentage of snoring and apnea events are positional in nature, and this product combination empowers users to change their sleep habits to lessen snoring and sleep apnea.


Phil Ryder -

Otter Skull Fossil March 9, 2017

Siamogale melilutra is a newly discovered fossil otter species from Southwestern China dated to about 6 million years old. At over 100 lbs, it is one of the largest otter species known to science. An international team of scientists, including Dr. Denise Su at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, recovered many specimens of this new species, including a complete cranium. The cranium was flattened through the fossilization process and required digital reconstruction, which took months. Through a collaboration with think[box], the reconstructed cranium was 3D printed. This 3D print of the cranium facilitated comparative analyses with other otter species (both extant and fossil). Dr. Su is continuing her collaboration with think[box] to improve the resolution of the printed cranium for future research on the functional morphology of the otter.


Denise Su -

nCamp Stove February 27, 2017

This compact wood-burning camping stove uses fuel that is readily available in forests - sticks, twigs, and other combustible material. By using renewable and readily-available fuel, this stove eliminates packaging/trash associated with canned fuel.


Dan Cuffaro -

RVS Rubber Solutions February 10, 2017

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), about 100 million pounds of tire components discarded during the manufacturing process are dumped in landfills nationally each year because the body ply—the tire’s largest component—can’t be effectively recycled. But RVS Rubber Solutions, a student startup based at Case Western Reserve University, believes it’s come up with a solution to this environmental hazard: new technology called Resonant Vibrational Separation (RVS) that extracts the rubber and steel from within the components in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way. 

Learn more about RVS Rubber Solutions here.

Cast Glass Artwork February 7, 2017

Cleveland Institute of Art glass student, Mark Rubelowsky, turned laser cut plywood into a cast glass masterpiece. Using the think[box] laser cutters, he created a multi-layered wood mold lakeside. He used this mold to make a negative out of rubber, which he then used to cast a wax positive identical to the wooden mold. A plaster and silica mold was built around the wax positive, and the wax was steamed out to empty the mold. Then, Mark filled the plaster mold with glass powder and cullet, and fired the piece.


Mark Rubelowsky -

Wireless Low-Power Low-Cost IMU February 2, 2017

Inertial Measurement Units (IMUs) are self-contained systems that measure linear and angular motion, usually with a triad of gyroscopes and triad of accelerometers. IMU's are used in robotics, structural health monitoring, autonomous vehicles, and more. This self-contained IMU prototype uses the MPU9250 sensor package which uses magnetic field and temperature data to compensate for the drift problems typically seen in gyroscopes and accelerometers. Data is packetized by a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M4 microcontroller and transmitted to a desktop computer using the XBee protocol. Compared to commercially-available IMU's, this prototype is low-cost (under $100), low-power (less than 330 mW including the wireless transmitter), and miniature. Research is underway on novel approaches to further minimize sensor drift and improve accuracy.


Yang Yang -