Day 21:

Hey readers, just a heads up, this blog will be moving in the next few days, and i will let you know where and when in the coming up days.  Sorry I did not update yesterday, my bad.  Alvaro and I did some fun stuff.  We took apart the fuser when another sample bit the dust on us, and we took out the parts that were grabbing at the sample and getting it stuck.  That was fun.  Today, again, I am back to creating samples.  Not the most fun in the world, but enough to keep me going.  Already, there has been a fire in our building, so that was fun, loud noises and sirens going on around us as we tried to evacuate the building.  The alarm did not actually  stop for a while, and when I came back like an hour later, it had finally stopped.  That was pretty interesting, and when I had come back to the lab, I was expecting like a ceiling to have caved in on our lab or just plain rubble where it was before, but no such luck.  Nope, got in and celebrated that the lab was still intact, then got back to work.

here is our new home ladies and gentlemen.  Sorry for the inconvenience.

Day 19:

Well, after killing one sample today, I have decided not to kill the one I was working on next, and so far, I am up to 11 layers to work with, and that took me about 4-5 hours today.  Long time for so little value, and you wonder why I don't get paid for this.  Moving the lab was fun today, before I left, I decided to ask some other interns for some help in moving the last of the large stuff to the other lab, but of course, we were given the light stuff.  I was ready to leave, but I went down with the faithful few, and I caught the undergrad that we are working with, Vineeth, trying to move a bookcase with the books inside it, altogether weighing probably pretty close to 700 pounds, and he was trying to move it by himself.  Now mind you, the lab he was going to move to is in another building, there was no way he was going to make it without an injury.  It took all of us, 3 or 4 in all to actually move the bookcase, and one more to hold the multiple doors for us.  We would never have made it as it was without the help of an electrical engineer major called Connor, and we promptly finished the extraction of the bookcase and placed it in the new lab.  Thanks to Connor for helping us, and may you be available if we need help again.

Day 18:

Alright a riddle for all of you people, what happens when you put toner into an oven and heat it to 130 degrees Celcius?  It dries.  We kind of should of thought of that when we tried that out today.  We were trying to preheat the transfer material before we tried to fuse the layers together, however, I found out that you can't really fuse a sample that is already fused onto the transfer material.  Well, that literally wasted an hour and a half of my time today, because my stupid weight machine was not doing its job, one job and it couldn't do it.  Well, lets just say we did not heat the toner to as hot as what it was before.  We dropped the heat down to 75 degrees Celcius, and we had a couple of near perfect transfers.  It is actually surprising to me, considering that we are using a transfer material that is supposed to be used with larger printers, and I was kind of scared that the sample would end up getting stuck in the printer or the fuser, and I would have to spend another 2 hours trying to clean it up.  Oh, yea, I finished transferring all of the data from the profilometer onto one excel document, so that it is easier to see and analyze the data, hopefully we will be actually analyzing the data that we have made.  My goal in the near future, try to keep all of your finger prints when working around a fuser at 180 degrees Celcius and an oven at 75 - 100 degrees Celcius, oh and keeping my hand might be nice, I know that my hand can come in handy when next I play goalie in my future soccer games.

Day 17:

Well, I did not get any hate mail, so you guys are doing great!  Anyways, I apologize for not updating yesterday, I was pretty busy.  Anyways, I finished another 30 layer sample yesterday, and I will finish another one today.  These relatively small samples are helping us figure out which fusing way will work best and with the least amount of mess ups, and we are using the profilometer for both.  Eventually, I will stop collecting data and start to analyze data.

Day 15:

Sorry readers, I have been kind of busy and accidentally neglected all of you, not that too many of you really read this.  Anyways, I was proven wrong, the two-toner layer made it to 100 layers, though i must add, it was far more stressful as I got closer because that sample had a much greater chance of getting caught in the machine, and once i hit somewhere around 80 layers, the sample kept on getting stuck in the machine.  So, this sample took me until wednesday to fully complete, but I definitely celebrated some once it was done.  Done with the old and onto the new right?  Anyways, after that sample was finished, Alvaro and I tried something new that Marcos, Alvaro's adviser, insisted that we try.  The transfer material was thicker than the 100 layer point of the two-toner sample, so we really had doubts that it would be able to make it through the machine.  So, after about 3 layers, it became noticeable that if we kept going, it would more than likely require us to do some major modifications on the fuser itself.   Oh, I forgot to mention, the new material that we were trying to use was not see-through, so it made it near impossible to line up the layers perfectly.  That was annoying to say the least, and everytime we had sent it through the fuser, I had to clean the machine because the toner had leaked out onto the machine from where it had kept getting stuck in the process of fusing.  Alvaro and I decided against going farther than 4 layers, and he introduced me to a profilometer.  I was working with that most of Thursday and all of Friday.  The profilometer, for those of you who don't know, like me, is a small little reader like what they would use to keep track of seismic activity, and it just goes across the sample in a straight line to show us just how uneven the sample actually is.  But, the only problem, the process takes a few more minutes onto each layer, so instead of a layer taking about 15-20 minutes, it now takes about 40-45 minutes, and it obviously slows you down.  Anyways, I am up to 20 layers in two days of work, and hopefully I will finish the sample on Monday.  I hope to remember to update on Monday, but no hate mail if I forget please! 

Day 12

Today, I am finishing up the two-toner sample, and we are trying to get the sample to 100 layers, however, based upon the printing now, I don't think the machine can handle the thickness of the sample.  The sample is starting to get stuck in the machine, and we are only at 75 layers.  I really don't think that we will get too many more layers.  however, that will be the limit of the machine, and that was what was supposed to happen.  Alvaro can find out how many layers that is for one toner, and that was what he really wanted to find out.  Man, this can be a very monotonous process though.

Day 10 and 11:

Sorry fellas, missed a day.  The grill party was awesome, lots and lots of volleyball fun.  Alvaro has me making a new sample for him, we want to see if we can get a two-tonor sample that high, considering it is thicker, and not really as easily transferred.  I am not sure if we will make it to 50 layers, but I am at 35 now, so we shall see.  It could turn drastic or terrific.

Day 9:

1, 2, 3, ... 97, 98, 99, 100!!!!!!!!!!!

WE MADE IT!!!!!!!  It was a miracle to say the least.  We broke the high amount of layers at 63 yesterday, and I just kept going today.  I had my doubts when we reached 80, but there was also some hope, it wasn't breaking apart like the sample that broke up at 63.  It still is not breaking up.  It is actually a pretty decent sample, some smooth spots, but some areas a little rough.  All in all though, we made it to our goal and now comes the really fun part, testing the sample.

Day 8 & 9

AWESOME DAY!!!!  Yesterday, it was the first day where a sample actually made it through the whole day!  It broke the previous record that I had set at 63, and right now it is at 73 layers!  Alvaro and I are trying to reach 100 layers with a sample, it should be enough layers to give Alvaro the data that he needs.  Maybe this sample will make it that far, maybe not.  Right now, the machine is roaring, the tonor is painting, and we are ready to roll, to break the new record and to make it to 100.  Lets see how we end up doing.

Day 7 & 8

Yesterday, i managed to get another sample stuck in the machine.  Alvaro is sure that it is just a problem with the machine, I am almost positive that I am NOT to blame, but I don't have enough experience to actually hold up my end of the arguement.  This time though, the sample made it to 40, as usual.  I don't know, after doing this process non-stop for 4 or 5 days straight now, I can see how people can get tired of it.  It seems that every couple of hours, I need to go out for a jog to avoid falling asleep.  Today I am creating another sample to test the Kodak printer that we have, to test its limit.  We shall see how far we end up getting.

Day 6:

Sorry that this is a little late, but yesterday was a very long day.  Those of you who know the process of 3D printing will understand, but yesterday, I had created two different samples of about 40 layers each, and the last time I put them in the machine, they ended up getting caught in the mechanics and the samples were ruined.  When that happened, it took Alvaro and I the better part of an hour to clean up the printer from the excess of tonor.  Today, I am starting over a new sample, and hopefully, I can make it to the limit that I am looking for.

Day 5:

Grill PARTY!! That was great.  We had a very large supply of food from the ever willing interns, thank God.  I was hungry, though I really did not eat a lot.  I only ate 5 hamburgers and 3 hot dogs.   In all honesty, I have eaten so much more than that, but I was hypnotized by the volleyball net, and I quickly ran over there to play with my friends.  Work-wise, today was a long day.  The 3D sample that I had created yesterday to test the limit of Alvaro's printer fell apart, literally, at 63 layers.  After talking with Alvaro and his advisors, we all decided to flip the sample over and insert the sample upside down when we print the layers.  Alvaro was kind of pessimistic about the idea.  By doing this though, we have applied more heat and pressure on the things that need it, for example, the surface of the sample needs more pressure than heat, though it does need both.  So, by heating the sample from the back and applying more pressure on the front, we have applied what is needed to those parts that need it.  So far, it has been a great success, with 20 layers of almost perfect transition from the printed ink onto the 3D sample, which is incredible and much better than the sample that I had created yesterday.  On monday, I hope to complete the "height test" and finally actually put a limit on Alvaro's machine, hopefully breaking the record at 63 layers.  Then again, it would involve the long and tedious process over and over and over again.  By the end of the day, my patience is usually gone and I am barking at everyone that talks to me.  Not the greatest process, and I only wish it could be done a different way.

Day 4:

Man, today was a long day.  Today, after our arrival meeting, I met with Alvaro and he had me starting a 3D sample to check the maximum layers that could be made with his homemade 3D printer, and in 8hrs of work, I managed to get to layer 50 before I left to go with the other interns to a very interesting seminar about electron-photon lasers and being able to see atoms.  It was really cool, however, I was still exhausted from my long soccer game last night, so I almost fell asleep during the professor's presentation.  I was still concious through the entire sminar though.  The day was fun, but long and tedious.  I am really looking forward to the grill party tomorrow, considering that Nate is bringing water balloons to have some even more fun.  So, it is not just a grill party, but also a water party!  That is going to be really fun.

Day 3:

Today was a ton of fun.  Alvaro did not actually show up until 2-2:30pm today, so I had the morning pretty much to myself.  I went to a few movies with the other interns, and some of those clips were really cool.  There was one on invisibility and one on the brain, along with a few other less interesting ones.  It is pretty amazing what today's technology can do, and it is even more cool what they could create in the near future.  After the movie clips, I helped Dimetri, a student of RIT that had brought in a clean room from Arizona, in pieces of course, and I helped him move the pieces of the giant clean room down to his lab with the help of a few interns there.  On the  last piece of equipment today, I saw Alvaro and I joined up with him and made some sample 3-D layers, just to get the feel of the process of doing it.  Eventually, in the near future, Alvaro wants me to work on finding a limit to the number of layers that his homemade 3-D printer has, since it could very easily get into the 200 and 300 layers.  Most hp-3-D printers can only print up to about 50 layers, and his does that for a warm up.  Understandably, that could be pretty tedious at times, but the process is really cool, and I am really having fun, even if it involves helping other students and getting some dirt on my hands.  I am really going to enjoy this internship, I can see that now.


Today was actually pretty fun.  I helped Alvaro (my supervisor) to pack what was left in the room to pack, and I then got to move some stuff over to the new lab that we are going to.  After that, I got to meet both of Alvaro's advisors, Shu and Marko, along with his co-worker Vineeth.  Both of them are collaborating to create a series of samples involving extreme pressure and a ton of heat to create 3D images, and eventually, the two of them are trying to solve the damages and ridges that are created as you get more and more layers added on the sample.  This could be a ton of fun considering that I am the one that Alvaro wants to create the samples, probably going on to hundreds of them in one day, while he records some different things that he is testing on the projects.  Tomorrow, hopefully, the plan is to create a temporary work station and get a few tests in place after moving everything else into the Engineering building at RIT.  Lets see what we can get done.

Hey, my name is Robert Semple and I am in the RIT Internship program.  Specifically, I am in the PRISM Lab in the Imaging Science building, and today we had a ton of fun!  The Scavenger Hunt was awesome, and a really good way to get to know each of the interns, or at least more of them.  Eventually, I suppose, we will end up meeting with and getting to know the other interns, but that will take time.  Today, when we separated into our labs, I got a little frustrated.  Alvaro, my supervisor, told me that we had to move to another labratory in the building next door, which can only complicate my first few days.  One thing that I am glad for though, everyone else got boat loads of homework, and I did not get any.  I suppose moving to the new lab is part of that.  Eventually, after we create a temporary work station, I will be helping Alvaro with his 3D printing ideas, and that could keep me busy.  One thing that kind of frightens me, and most of the other interns, was the final project that we will have to do.  We really did not get real clear descriptions on what we need to do for the project, but the scary part was when we were told that we would have to present in front of about 200 people.  That is scary, for us all, considering that we are more used to presenting a project in front of about 30 people max, 200 is kind of pushing the limit.  All in all though, I am pretty sure that this is going to be a really fun opportunity for all involved, but only time will tell.

Robert Semple


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