While it’s home to a lot of creation, the Brock University Library Makerspace is helping to support innovation well beyond its walls.
Makerspace projects are happening in classrooms and research labs, with people making use of the facility’s emerging tools and technology.
Brock faculty, staff and students are invited to consult with Makerspace staff on how to enhance personal and course-related projects or research initiatives using Makerspace technology. All equipment can be used in the Makerspace and some tools can be borrowed for extended periods of time.
Thad Harroun, Chair of Brock’s Department of Physics, has been using the 3D printer in the Makerspace to develop science kits. A video of his first model is posted on Twitter.
“The 3D printers are helping to prototype rolling and moving gadgets that can turn an ordinary cellphone into a mobile physics lab,” he said. “This will be a great outreach project for secondary school students, and a little different from the usual engineering activities they may have seen.”
Harroun also borrowed a 360-degree camera and used Makerspace movie editing software to create a virtual tour of the Physics Department that showcases labs and classrooms in a digital, yet unique way.
Master of Science student Aurora Battis (BSc ’20) used the Makerspace’s Cricut machine to create custom adhesives for use in Brock’s Spine Biomechanics and Neuromuscular Control Lab.
“We have needs to affix a variety of different types of body-worn equipment to track human movement,” she said. “The Cricut lets us customize the shape, size and adhesive bonding strength to fit our requirements.”
After successfully cutting complex shapes, Battis has been exploring additional ways to use the Cricut, such as cutting reflective material to use for motion capture.
Other members of the lab have used the Makerspace’s 3D printer to develop life-size anatomical models of the vertebral bones, which are being used in the laboratory to demonstrate musculoskeletal concepts to those participating in ongoing research studies.
Brock community members interested in using Makerspace equipment can set up a time to consult with Makerspace staff, who will recommend the tools and technology best suited to the project and recommend learning and training opportunities. Faculty can borrow specialized equipment for extended periods of time, such as 3D scanners, mobile virtual reality, Sphero programmable robots, GoPros, 360-degree cameras, microphones and other video, photography and audio production equipment.
In-person creative lab spaces available include audio, video, photo and prototyping labs; 3D printers and carvers; laser cutting; stations with specialized software, such as GarageBand, Adobe Creative Cloud Suite and Easel; and stations with specialized equipment, such as a sewing machine and a Cricut Maker.
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