This edition of 3D printing news Sliced features stories from Formlabs, EOS, Dremel 3D, LulzBot, Laser Prototypes Europe, re:3D, GKN, Royal DSM, Konica Minolta, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Ohio State University, Adafruit, XRobots, Joris Laarman Lab, and Twindom.
Brain waves, Dental trays and focussing rays
Scientists from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, The University of Genoa in Italy, and Philips Medical Systems have developed a method of differentiating between multiple sclerosis lesions and other white brain matter diseases using 3D printing.
The group, led by Dr. Darin T. Okuda, analysed MS-affected brains. Using a MakerBot Replicator 2X 3D printer, they printed images obtained from a CT scan using in ABS filament. It is hoped that having 3D models of the lesions and assessing their shape and surface characteristics will aid diagnosis of MS.
Jiantong Li and Kyoung Ho Jeong, two scientists based at Ohio State University are researching 3D printed lens structures for use on suspended high-gain millimeter-wave antenna arrays. They are part of a team from Ohio State University’s ElectroScience Laboratory, led by Nima Ghalichechian, who are researching how to boost 5G signals using Micto-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS)
Formlabs has released its new orthodontic resin, suitable for 3D printing. The Dental LT Clear resin is “class IIa”, long-term and fully-biocompatible. It can be used in splints, aligners and retainers.
Manufacturing partnerships and equipment investments
Royal DSM has announced that RP America is to distribute its Somos range of 3D printing materials. The 3D printing service bureau already sells the UnionTech stereolithography (SLA) machines, and will now add Somos materials to its lineup.
GKN has launched a dedicated Additive Manufacturing division together with its own website. This follows the combination of all its specialist additive manufacturing centres under one company umbrella.
Laser Prototypes Europe (LPE), a UK-based 3D printing service bureau has undertaken its largest investment to date, the purchase of an EOS M290 laser sintering 3D metal printer. LPE expects to use the £500,000 printer to build custom complex components directly from CAD data, and will supply its customers in the aerospace and medical sectors.
3D printers are life-saving, self effacing, and educating
The fire department in the City of Magnolia, Texas, has installed a GigaBot 3D printer to assist in a number of tooling operations. The large format printer, from Texas-based re:3D is now being used to print custom hydrants to decorate LED signage, protective holders to protect RFID tags attached to equipment, and mask holders to protect equipment from breakage during transportation.
Konica Minolta, an OEM and consultancy has announced that it will be launching a free 30 day 3D printer trial for U.S. schools. The initiative is in conjunction with Dremel 3D, in an effort to bring 3D printing into the classroom.
3D body scanning OEM and service bureau Twindom, which specialises in 3D printing figures, has launched two products. The first, TwinProtect, is a coating that makes 3D portraits water and UV resistant, to prevent damage and sunlight causing them to fade. The second, HD retouching, is a service that allows algorithms from basic scan data to be fixed and retouched by a Twindom 3D artist, improving the scan without investing in expensive equipment.
Boards, faces, and evolutionary places
James Bruton, creative director at XRobots, has used a LulzBot MOARstruder to 3D print an Iron Man themed electric longboard. Bruton, who has already built a skateboard out of giant 3D printed LEGO bricks, printed the body of the board from PLA, and the tyres from Ninjaflex in 80 hours.
Limor Fried, the founder of open software company Adafruit, and designer Phillip Torrone have created a 3D printed stamp bearing the face of US abolitionist, suffragist and American Civil War hero Harriet Tubman. The stamp was created in response to the US Treasury’s delay in introducing Tubman’s likeness on to $20 bills until 2020, and its dimensions mean that anybody can “update” the stamps seamlessly.
The first major US exhibition of Joris Laarman Lab, an experimental design studio from The Netherlands, examines the crossroads between art, design and functionality. The show features an array of well known designs, including the 3D Printed Gradient Screen, and the MX3D Bridge project.
‘Joris Laarman Lab: Design in the Digital Age’ will be exhibited at the Cooper Hewitt gallery in New York until 15 January 2018.
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Featured image shows the “Adaptation Chair”. Photo via Joris Laarman Lab.