First 3D printed rocket

Human-sized and weighing 3kg, this £6,000 project is the world’s first 3D printed rocket. Will its maiden voyage be the success that its team hopes it to be?

http://www.taipeitimes.com/…/biz/arch…/2014/10/13/2003601926

Fueled by beer and the enthusiasm of amateurs, a British team on Friday said it was preparing to launch the world’s first ever 3D printed rocket.

Showing off the human-sized rocket in a central London office, Lester Haines, head of the “Special Projects Bureau” at technology magazine The Register, described the technical challenges and “big future” of 3D printing in aeronautics.

“You can do highly complex shapes that simply aren’t practical to do any other way,” he said, dressed in a white lab coat sporting the project motto “Ad astra tabernamque,” which means “to the stars and the pub.”

“NASA are already 3D-prinsting metal rocket parts, so it’s obviously got a big future,” he said.

The project — sponsored by German data analytics firm Exasol AG — was suggested by readers of The Register and goes by the grand title “Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator,” or LOHAN for short.

It took 30 committed team members, including doctorate aeronautical engineers, four years to build the rocket.

The biggest challenge was getting the standard hobbyist rocket motor to fire at high altitudes, Haines said.

The team said it plans to launch the rocket from Spaceport America, the home of Virgin Galactic in New Mexico, later this year, after securing the £15,000 (US$24,000) needed for liftoff on crowdfunding site Kickstarter.

A huge helium balloon will lift the rocket 20,000m into the stratosphere, at which point the onboard GPS is set to ignite the engine, catapulting it to speeds of about 1,610kph.

The 3kg rocket, which cost £6,000 to print, is then scheduled to use an onboard autopilot to guide it back to Earth, all captured by an onboard video camera.

Haines explained how 3D printing’s main advantage was in speeding up the process of refining prototypes, requiring only a tweak to the computer-aided design plans that instruct the printer.

He called LOHAN “a because it’s there project,” which had no commercial value, but added that the number of potential uses for similar unmanned aerial vehicles was “endless.”

With the countdown on, Haines dispelled any suggestions the crew was feeling the pressure.

“We got some of the team turning up for a beer tonight,” he revealed. “It’s going to get really messy.”

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3D printed wax replica of yourself

Need to a 3D print a life-size anatomically-correct wax replica of yourself? China’s got you covered 🙂

http://3dprint.com/8615/life-sized-wax-3d-print/

wax-feat

We have covered several companies which have been offering services where they 3D print small figures in the likeness of people, which are modeled after 3D scans, or even pictures taken with a smartphone camera. From bobblehead dolls, to large 3D models resembling a particular person, there is certainly no lack of choices available to consumers. Most of these 3D printed figures range in size from a couple of inches tall to about 18 inches in height, giving consumers many options which they can decide upon, based on their budgets.

As the 3D printing space becomes ever more popular, the novelty of such services may eventually wear off, unless of course there is continued innovation.  One company, based in China, called Qingdao Unique Products Develop Co. Ltd, is doing just that by offering life-sized 1:1 wax 3D prints of people.

Surely you have all seen the amazing work done on wax figures at the Madame Tussauds museum. These figures take months on end to create by hand, and cost more money than most people could ever hope to afford. In addition, hundreds, if not thousands of individual measurements need to be taken and calculated to ensure an anatomically precise model is created. This may not be the case for much longer though.

Qingdao Unique Products Develop Co., Ltd’s Anyprint brand has created a 3D printer, unlike any other, which they will be making available to businesses worldwide. The printer, which was revealed last month at the Second World 3D printing technology Industry Conference and Exposition held in Qingdao, Shandong, is a staggering two meters (approximately 6’6″) in height, allowing it to print 1:1 accurate 3D wax models of most human beings. According to the company, this is the world’s largest wax 3D printer on the market, and it uses fused deposition modeling technology.

“The world’s largest person-size 3D wax statues printer successfully developed by Unique Technology will dramatically change the rules of future characters, cartoon dolls and other cultural and creative market,” states the company’s blog.

The exact specifications of this printer have not been released as of yet, with further details forthcoming. Qingdao Unique Products Develop Co., Ltd is headquartered in Shandong, China, and has been in business for 13 years.  They sell a variety of 3D printers, both small and large, and even custom build printers for their clients specific needs.  Let us know what you think about this new giant wax 3D printer in the 1:1: wax printer forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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by  | JULY 9, 2014