Carlo Ratti Associati And Scribit Unveil The World's First Compostable Marker
by Rudy Sanchez on 12/09/2020 | 2 Minute Read
Felt-tip marker pens, unlike other kinds of paint and materials, are self-contained, making them highly versatile and easy-to-use, especially when attached to a wall-crawling drawing robot. The downside to this self-contained ink well design is that they often get made with mixed materials and prove difficult to recycle, which makes many of the markers eventually end up in landfills.
The designers of Scribit, a programmable vertical wall drawing device, came to realize how many single-use markers would get used on the tail of the success of their smart doodler. The firm turned to Scribit’s pen designers, Carlo Ratti Associati (CRA), to come up with a more sustainable alternative.
“We are proud of Scribit’s success, and how it has empowered thousands of people around the world to change the way they draw,” says Carlo Ratti, director of the MIT Senseable City Lab, who led the Scribit Pen design team, via press release. “However, we were troubled by the amount of plastic produced by the markers that the robot uses. By developing the new Scribit pen, we can turn one of humankind's primordial acts – drawing – into a fully sustainable one.”
According to CRA, approximately 35 billion markers end up in landfills annually. These markers are typically made of different materials, including plastics, and are unrecyclable in most areas. CRA’s new pen design incorporates a reusable outer housing made out of wood, bioplastic, and anodized aluminum. Inside, the replaceable cartridge and nibs get made with natural fibers and non-toxic ink, which Scribit says is certified edible, perfect for the child who was going to eat his markers anyway.
The sustainable Scribit marker pen is still under development, with updates promised at circular.scribit.design.