UROP: Design & fabrication of hollow section structural tube bending tools

Term UROP is offered: Spring 2023
UROP Department, Lab or Center: MIT D-Lab
Direct Supervisor: Jack Whipple
Compensation: UROP direct funding available if applicant accepted by February 14. Otherwise, credit or on volunteer basis.

Project description

Bending hollow round and square metal tubes are normal parts of fabricating space frame chassis, bicycles, furniture etc. Tooling is either semi-universal fitting a specific section and bend radius, or specific to the production tooling.

Student will inquire into atypical geometry in both the stock and tooling on a semi-universal bending machine, bending round and aero steel tube on novel bending dies fabricated from normal available steel stock plus inquiry into 3D printed metal and plastic structures behavior.

The student will work directly with a workshop manager and independently.


No prerequisites, though prior welding and Solidworks experience is a plus.


Jack Whipple, MIT D-Lab Worskhop Manager