BBC Horizon needed some walking ‘particles’ produced on a very tight deadline for a fun demonstration by Prof S. James Gates Jr.

Project Details

Material: SLS Nylon
Polishing: Yes
Dyeing: No
Finishing: None in house, some models sprayed by production team
Project cost:  £900 including prototypes


BBC Horizon came to us in urgent need of some walking particles for use in a fun demonstration on particle physics for their latest documentary ‘Inside CERN’.

Our role in the project was to design a body that would fit around the walking mechanism and could be customised with a letter depicting each type of particle currently known to science. Our design team measured the walking mechanism and came up with a couple of designs to fit around it, showing clearly the particle symbols. The most volume efficient design was chosen and the prototype models went to print 2 days after the original enquiry.

A day or so later, once the prototype model has been finalised, the bespoke low volume production run of 36 bodies went to print on our Express Service and 48 hours later we ran them though our vibro-polishing machines, a free service, to smooth them down and remove any excess surface powder. From enquiry to finished product the project took just 8 days and was ready just in time for filming.

We certainly know more about particle physics now than we did before the project!