Combining materials during the 3D printing process is certainly one of those topics that will get your attention if you are following the industry. Since the first 3D printing machines were introduced the mechanics of this technology has carried a limitation of being able to use just one material in the production process, hence the stereotypical view that these machines are only used in making prototypes.
Stratatsys and Optomec, both global leaders in their fields within 3D printing, jointly created a “smart wing” for an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) model. This production combines the 3D printed electric circuitry including the conformal sensor and antenna directly onto the 3D printed wing of the model.
Combining 3D printed electronics with other materials has got the potential to transform many industries that are currently bound by traditional manufacturing processes. Borrowing the great quotation from Neil Armstrong “That’s one small step for the 3D printers and the team, one giant leap for mankind”.