About Us

History of Fab Labs

Fab Labs were born from an outreach project by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in inner-city Boston in 2005. Since then Fab Labs have quickly spread around the world. Now there are 35 Fab Labs from the inner cities of the USA to the villages of Africa.

Fab Labs share core capabilities, so that people and projects can be shared across them. This currently includes:

  • A computer-controlled lasercutter, for press-fit assembly of 3D structures from 2D parts
  • A larger (4'x8') numerically-controlled milling machine, for making furniture- (and house-) sized parts
  • A vinylcutter, to produce signs, printing masks, flexible circuits, and antennas
  • A precision (micron resolution) milling machine to make three-dimensional moulds and surface-mounted circuit boards
  • Electronics assembly
  • Programming tools for low-cost high-speed embedded processors
  • Sewing and embroidery equipment

You can read more about how Fab Labs started by following this link. www.cba.mit.edu. There is also a wealth of know how on Fab Lab equipment and projects.

The video below describes what a Fab Lab is from Prof Neil Gerschenfeld himself here in Manchester...