Kitchen Contraption Makes Dishes on Demand
MIT Media Lab's Counter Intelligence Group, which develops innovative kitchen designs, has created a machine that makes dishes on demand and recycles them after diners have finished a meal. I can't tell you how many times I wish we could have recycled dishes after a large dinner party, but I thought they would never make "dishes" that would be better than styrofoam or paper plates. These dishes are made from food-grade, nontoxic acrylic wafers, which are shaped into cups, bowls and plates when heated, then resume their original wafer shape when they are reheated and pressed.
The DishMaker frees space in dish cabinets and reduces landfill trash and uses less energy to recycle dishes than factories use to make them. And, because the machine can produce up to 150 items, a dinner host would never be short of table settings when unexpected guests arrive: Cooks can select the number of place settings needed using a simple push-button control panel.
The prototype DishMaker is the size of a standard dishwasher, and uses the heating element of a toaster oven to shape the items. We can imagine this thing as yet another item in our kitchen, but how amazing would this to have for the times when you need it - big parties - etc. To recycle the dishes, it heats them to about 300 degrees Fahrenheit to soften the acrylic, then a press restores them to wafers for easy stacking.
We think the bowls in the picture look amazing. You could probably get a whole range of acrylic colors and also press your own name, picture, or seal into the plates and cups. WILD!!!
Story Via Wired
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Posted by Jay Brewer at October 16, 2005 12:27 PM