Big names flock to Barcelona exhibition

Some of the world’s best designers, architects and engineers will gather at the Italian Pavilion de Fira at Barcelona’s Montjuic Exhibition Centre from June 21-23 to discuss how 3D printing can change this world.

Barcelona City Council has pledged support for this groundbreaking symposium through its Barcelona Activa Department. It’s just another example of government getting behind 3D printing and after decades on the periphery, it is exciting to see additive manufacturing given this level of attention.

Big names in attendance

The major players are taking it seriously, too. HP, Hofmann, Renishaw, Nexeo Solutions and Arburg are just a few of the exhibitors scheduled to attend. HP will give the Jet Fusion 3D printer its European launch and it will take its place alongside the likes of Axis Prototypes, Biotech Dental, Olivetti, Poly-Shape, Repro 3D and Ultimaker.

The event is neatly separated into four main sectors: Health, Automotive and Aeronautics, Consumer and Retail and Architecture and Habitat.

It is combination of a trade show and presentations from leading industry experts that tackle the big questions facing 3D printing. The assembled crowd will hear how 3D printing could help to build homes on the moon, create the next generation of aircraft and help to cure cancer.

One of the doyennes, the fathers of the internet, Vinto Cerf, will give the keynote speech. It’s a measure of the event’s gravitas that such major speakers will give their thoughts to industry heavyweights that will fly in from around the world.

Sagrada Familia, Gaudi's unfinished masterpiece in Barcelona. 3D printing will complete his vision.

Gaudi’s work finally finished

New Zealand born Burry will explain why he has turned to 3D printing to complete the Sagarada Familia, Gaudi’s iconic unfinished temple in Barcelona. The legendary architect was struck and killed by a tram before he had a chance to finish the building. Now modern technology will finally get the job done.

Belgian architect Xavier de Kestelier is one of the men charged with building houses on the moon. The simple cost of material transport means that we’ll have to make use of the material on the ground if we want to colonise the moon. The Belgian will take to the stage to explain how 3D printing has brought us closer to a life on other worlds.

Carnegie Mellon Universtiy in Pittsburgh is focused closer to home. Donald K Carter, director of the Remaking Cities Institute, will show the crowds how 3D printing can be used to transform America’s skylines before too long.

German architect Patrik Schumacher will also introduce the conference to the work of the late Iranian architect Zaha Hadid. The 2004 Pritzker Architecture Prize winner added the Stirling Prize in 2010 and 2011. Now Schumacher is incorporating 3D printing in the continuation of her geometric work that includes the Broad Art Museum in Michigan and the Guangzhou opera house in China.

Greek architect Areti Markopoulou is now the head of the Institute of Advanced Architecture in Catalonia. Along with Jorge Duro and Laia Mogas, who work with the iconic MIT’s Media Lab, they will lay out the future of 3D printing in the construction industry.

Exciting advances in healthcare

In the healthcare segment, prominent neurosurgeon Bartolome Oliver, an early adopter of 3D prosthetics and implants for facial reconstruction surgery, will share his knowledge. Dr Lucas Kruel will share groundbreaking cancer research that is due to 3D printing technology implemented by the Hospital of Sant Joan de Deu in Barcelona.

Fashion designer Danit Peleg has turned consumer grade 3D printers into a real asset in his studio and he brings a hacker element to the show. New York architect Francis Bitonti took a break from his usual routine to 3D print a dress for burlesque star Dita von Teese and he will join Peleg on stage.

People that have come for the automotive and aerospace developments will get to listen to Jose Manuel Martin Vazquez, an engineer at Airbus Defence and Space. This European aviation group is at the forefront of 3D printing and Vazquez will undoubtedly have some illuminating commentary for the assembled throng.

Electric cars go open source?

Open source hardware will also come under the microscope as Simone Cicero, from OS Vehicle, will take to the stage to explain how 3D printing can bring the price of electric vehicles right down.

Rounding off the show will be a presentation by Fab Lab Barcelona’s Tomas Diez, who will ask for the support from the cutting edge for the maker community that can help drive additive manufacturing forward. The Fab Lab will have its own area at the show and will demonstrate a variety of 3D printers, host workshops and provide a meeting space for those at the show.

This show promises to take on some mighty big subjects and will also introduce small businesses in the region to the potential of 3D printing. It’s a big deal for Barcelona and the industry as a whole.

We’re looking forward to it.



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