3DP Applications

3D Printing Industry Review of the Year: April 2019

April 2019 saw new developments from Stratasys including its debut SLA industrial 3D printer. Applications of 3D printing for healthcare continued, including new approaches for 3D printed personalized prosthesis, cardiac patches, and bone tissue.

Stratasys’ first SLA system & Pantone validation

At the Additive Manufacturing User’s Group (AMUG) ConferenceStratasys, the inventor of FDM 3D printing technology, made its entry into SLA with the V650 Flex, a large-scale, industrial 3D printer, operating a build volume of 508 x 508 x 584 mm (W x D x H). The company’s J735 and J750 systems also received validation from Pantone, the global color authority and provider of professional color standards for the design industries.

The V650 Flex. Photo via Stratasys
The V650 Flex. Photo via Stratasys.

“Largest amorphous metal component”

Heraeus, a German technology group specializing in precious metals, produced what is described as the “largest amorphous metal component” using additive manufacturing. This part was manufactured using the company’s own patented AMZ4 metal powder in a standard SLM 3D printing system.

The heraeus amorphous metal component. Photo via Heraeus.
The Heraeus amorphous metal component. Photo via Heraeus.

Award-winning American 3D printer OEM 3D Systems also announced the opening of a new Advanced Additive Manufacturing Center in Pinerolo, Italy. The new center was established to broaden the company’s On-Demand manufacturing service in Europe, beyond sites already present in France, the UK, and Germany, among others.

Also in Europe, Spanish shipbuilder Navantia signed a contract with the Ministry of Defense to construct five F-110 frigates (warships) incorporating additive manufacturing for the Spanish Navy. This will reportedly be the first in the fleet to have integrated 3D printed components as well as cybersecurity systems.

3D Systems opens Advanced Additive Manufacturing Center in Pinerolo, Italy. Photo via 3D Systems.
3D Systems opens Advanced Additive Manufacturing Center in Pinerolo, Italy. Photo via 3D Systems.

Medical advances using additive manufacturing

Scientists at Rice University and the University of Maryland (UMD) outlined a new proof-of-concept for 3D printing artificial bone tissue. The results published in Acta Biomaterialia, aim to one day help to damage related to arthritis and sporting accidents.

In addition, researchers from Virginia Tech also presented a study aiming to improve 3D printed personalized prosthesis. This investigation demonstrates the ability to integrate electronic sensors at the intersection between an artificial limb and the wearer’s tissue – creating a form-fitting prosthesis.

In Israel, a team of scientists at Tel Aviv University (TAU), displayed research for 3D printed hearts and cardiac patches, in the continuing effort to replicate full organs using patient tissue.

Rice University graduate student Sean Bittner holds a sample of a 3D printed scaffold. Photo by Jeff Fitlow, Rice University
Rice University graduate student Sean Bittner holds a sample of a 3D printed scaffold. Photo by Jeff Fitlow, Rice University.

Business developments and RAPID + TCT 2019 rumblings 

Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne and its research partners were awarded $1 million AUD from the  Global Innovation Linkages Program, towards a $3.5 million project to develop and mass-produce 3D printed carbon composites parts.

Global chemical company Henkel stepped further into the additive manufacturing market as a result of its partnership with TerraCycle. This collaboration fostered eco-friendly packaging to those using 3D printing through the Adhesive Recycling Program.

A month prior to RAPID + TCT 2019 in Detroit, Michigan, Additive Manufacturing Technologies (AMT), an award-winning UK-based post-processing systems manufacturer, announced two new machines, the PostPro3DColor and PostPro3DMini.

Parts post-processed with AMT’s PostPro3D. Image via AMT.
Parts post-processed with AMT’s PostPro3D. Image via AMT.

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Featured image shows the V650 Flex. Photo via Stratasys.

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