An modular and innovative approach to furniture

Fall 2019 | Mechanical Design Co-Lead

About the Design

SpaceJam! is the next furniture solution for complex housing problems, such as space habitats and disaster relief shelters

Requires minimal supply transportation by utilizing readily available materials, such as sand, as the main material

Modular and reformable to fulfill multiple needs with a single piece

How it Works

SpaceJam! uses the jamming of granular particles to create stable, yet moldable furniture

Vacuum pump removes air from bag and jams fill particles into a solid state

Pressure can be released and reintroduced to reconfigure the furniture into a different shape or mold to a user’s form

Colored lines act as a guide to form different furniture pieces, such as a chair or table

Excerpt from user's manual

Technical Specifications

Less than 3 lbs total weight when using polyfill

Capable of supporting 100+ lb load

Able to be easily reshaped by one person in under 2 minutes

Particulate fill easily swappable to readily available site materials, such as dirt and sand, or repurposed materials, such as fill made from recycled plastic bottles

Load testing with various prototypes

Prototyping and Testing

Explored use of nitinol wires, inflation and compression chambers, and tension based jamming

Prototyped with various materials, including sand, polyfill, and beads to identify constraints and key differences

Explored form to identify potential shapes and configurations

Conducted user testing to identify 5 suggested configurations

Tested load capacity and structural integrity throughout the design process

Early Prototype in table form

Exploring different forms

Materials and Manufacturing

Polyfill was chosen was the base material due to light weight and comfort provided by the malleable texture

Enclosed within polyethylene bagging film, and sealed with vacuum tape

Valve closure allows for pump to be disconnected from bag after vacuum is pulled

Fabric sleeve provides additional protection to the bagging and user comfort