Stanford Students Design a Fully-Recyclable Laptop

by , 11/05/10

stanford autodesk, aaron engel-hall, autodesk bloom laptop, stanford bloom laptop, autodesk bloom laptop, recyclable laptop, laptop dis-assemble, recycle laptop components

A group of grad students from Standford University have won October’s Autodesk Inventor of the Month award for their unique Bloom laptop – a computer that was designed to be disassembled for recycling in just two minutes without any tools. Computer accessories and components often contain precious metals such as platinum that can be recycled, and as such, the Bloom laptop was designed to be broken down so that its various parts can be recycled with ease.

stanford autodesk, aaron engel-hall, autodesk bloom laptop, stanford bloom laptop, autodesk bloom laptop, recyclable laptop, laptop dis-assemble, recycle laptop components

The Bloom laptop was originally a class project led by Aaron Engel-Hall, who found that while normal laptops do contain recyclable components, they’re all mended together in such a way that no regular user could ever disentangle it. Not so with the Bloom laptop, where all the components can be separated easily from the frame for proper recycling.

In addition to being recyclable, there are other benefits to Bloom’s modular design. Engel-Hall reported that his team used the easy-to-disassemble modularity of Bloom to develop a keyboard and track pad that can detach and be improved ergonomically. The ease of disassembly also makes it easier to repair and upgrade components over the lifetime of the product.

“Buying a computer is no longer a singular investment,” Engel-Hall said, “but a longer-term relationship between the consumer and the service provider.” He added, “[We] used Autodesk Inventor software often during the ideation phase to experiment with the design. We created 3D shapes to represent the hardware we had to design around, and the parametric design of Inventor software let me put in different parameters so that all the model dimensions would update immediately. I was also able to experiment with various thicknesses for the case enclosure, making it as thin as possible while maintaining structural integrity.”

View a video of the product in action here.

+ Autodesk

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  1. Hyncharas November 13, 2010 at 3:40 am

    It’s an amazing idea, though it is also still lacking a big problem when it comes to high-performance laptops: heat exchange.

    The biggest issue with powerful laptops these days doesn’t come from viruses, but actually the lifespan of components because of just how easy it is for dust to get sucked into the machine and damage components over time. In March this year the IDC released a White Paper on the subject of ruggedized PCs where it was found for notebook repairs that 35% is due to dust getting inside the machine simply from normal operation; since virtually all of these devices have no dust protection whatsoever.

    I realise that this is only a case study (no pun intended), but a significant step forward was if the team included removable dust filters that could be washed and reattached to machines after extensive build-up, so laptops are guaranteed to last longer against dust infiltration. Less dust would also drastically improve performance, as the components then wouldn’t have to work harder because they are clogged by dust and dirt that has penetrated the system’s interior case.

  2. Modular_Thailand November 11, 2010 at 3:49 am

    Go ahead the genius students. Cheer!. This extreme concept will become the next version of portable computer. –Lifesbox–

  3. admin November 8, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    I wish more manufacturers would focus on the micro details like this…

  4. admin November 8, 2010 at 2:44 pm

    this is incredible!

  5. sevda November 8, 2010 at 10:35 am

    That’s incredible.Go for greener world.

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