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After our initial foam experiments didn’t lead any where we began working with ice. Here we found that we could freeze the ice, crack it using warm water and refreeze and repeat the process. This we felt was an iterative system.

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In our next meeting with Yusuke he liked our approach and was interested in the idea of cracking as a material system. He suggested we read the chapter on cracking in Phillip Ball’s book “Pattern Formation in Nature” and to experiment with more materials to develop a catalog of techniques.

We went on to work with glass (which proved to uncontrollable) , and we tried a resin model which was initially a disaster, as our molds did not hold and it spilled everywhere and the smell was not making us any friends, it was actually quite a toxic substance and used greater care from then on. But in the end we had something we could show:

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Resin is a casting material. It is clear and you have to add a hardening agent for it to dry. But if you add to much it heats up excessively and cracks, which is exactly what we wanted.

It was actually kind of funny when I went ot buy the resin from the sculture shop (Tiranti) and was asking about how to get the resin to crack there was anoth girl there asking to do the same thing and it turned out that she too was at the AA, in the third year and looking to use cracking in her projects, what are the chances.

In any case it was good that something worked from the resin show we could show more than just ice at our midpoint review, that and more in the next post.

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