Foldable Mechanical Devices
- Magazine Article
Engineers have developed new technology that builds complex mechanisms into the exterior of a structure without taking up any actual space below the surface. This new class of mechanisms, called “developable mechanisms,” get their name from developable surfaces, or materials that can take on 3D shapes from flat conformations without tearing or stretching, like a sheet of paper or metal. They reside in a curved surface and can transform or morph when deployed to serve unique functions. When not in use, they can fold back into the surface of the structure seamlessly.