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Düsseldorf - At the Bayer booth (A75, Hall 6), that is, where a futuristic prototype interactive cello made of a transparent cast polyurethane resin will be displayed, together with an ensemble of other musical instruments made from Bayer plastics. The Cello 2.0, as it is called, is lightweight and ergonomically shaped, with interactive features designed to enhance the experience of playing the instrument.

Karen Laird

October 18, 2013

2 Min Read
K 2013:  There’s music in the air…

Düsseldorf - At the Bayer booth (A75, Hall 6), that is, where a futuristic prototype interactive cello made of a transparent cast polyurethane resin will be displayed, together with an ensemble of other musical instruments made from Bayer plastics. The Cello 2.0, as it is called, is lightweight and ergonomically shaped, with interactive features designed to enhance the experience of playing the instrument.

Cello-Bayer.jpg

The development of the new cello was a joint project between Bayer Material Science and four other partners. One of the partners, Hamburg-based Teams Design Company, responsible for the ergonomic shape of the Cello 2.0 asked professional and amateur musicians for their input on the innovative functions that should be incorporated into the new design.  Interestingly, they found that music students, for example, wanted to be able to tune the instrument using color signals, or to have a built-in metronome function. The wish list of the professional musicians, however, contained such features as special lighting effects or even video presentations during live performances

"The requests for these features led us to recommend the use of cast resins," says Gunnar Geiger, head of the laboratory for CASE applications at RAMPF Gießharze, another partner who assisted in creating the prototype. "They make it possible to efficiently produce moldings that incorporate additional functions, even in small production runs." 

The resin that was ultimately selected for the avant-garde designed body of the cello is an aliphatic polyurethane. Shortly before casting, the polyurethane is prepared from two liquid, solvent-free components from Bayer MaterialScience’s Desmodur and Desmophen product lines.

All the technical components required for sound and visualization are integrated into the neck and fingerboard. A third partner, Zonewicz Faserverbundtechnik, worked with the Teams Design production designers to ensure that the sound box is connected harmoniously with the functional body of the cello. Their work included optimizing the vibrational response of the materials so that the instrument has a good tone and voice.

Yet another partner, TLD Planungsgruppe, a company specializing in lighting and media design, was also involved in the development of a potential variant model featuring LEDs and mini video projectors in the neck and fingerboard. The projector can display graphics or videos on the transparent front surface of the cello. A tuning device or surfaces for video jockeying (VJing) can also be installed in the instrument. In one alternative solution, LEDS and ultra flat OLED displays could be integrated directly and used to display photos and videos.

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