3D printing – still quite a young space

http://bgr.com/2015/08/25/3d-printer-multimaterial-3d-printing-breakthrough/

3D Printer

Major technological advancement yields a printer that could change the face of 3D printing

While the technology has certainly generated plenty of buzz over the past few years, 3D printing is still quite a young space. Advancements in 3D printing are coming hot and heavy — just think about how affordable this technology is now, for example. Nearly anyone with a need for a 3D printer can now purchase one for just a few hundred dollars.

But affordability is hardly the only area where huge advancements are being made in 3D printing.

A group of engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have created a prototype of what may quite literally end up being a game changer for 3D printing.

“Multimaterial printing” is the term for a process whereby a 3D printer creates objects out of more than one material at a time. The most common use case involves colors — a printer might build 3D objects in two or three different colors at once, rather than forcing the user to create different colored piece separately and then assemble them.

Now, researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have created a 3D printer with multimaterial support that can print with 10 different materials at once. Most interesting, perhaps, is the fact that the printer supports not just different colors, but also different plastics and metals.

So, with this new printer, users may be able to print fully assembled objects made of several different materials. But wait… it gets even better.

The team from MIT has managed to build machine vision into its new printer. Using this technology, the 3D printer can correct printing errors on its own, with no input needed from its operators. It can also scan objects that already exist and 3D print directly onto them or around them. For example, it can print circuit boards directly onto an object.

Or, as an extremely basic example, imaging placing your smartphone in the device and having it 3D print a protective case around it.

More information on the project, which is being spearheaded by MIT engineers Pitchaya Sitthi-Amorn, Javier E. Ramos, Yuwang Wang, Joyce Kwan, Justin Lan, Wenshou Wang and Wojciech Matusik, can be found by following the link below in our source section.

bgr.com

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MIT’s glass 3D printer

http://gizmodo.com/watching-mits-glass-3d-printer-is-absolutely-mesmerizin-1725433454

Watching MIT's Glass 3D Printer Is Absolutely Mesmerizing

Watching MIT’s Glass 3D Printer Is Absolutely Mesmerizing

MIT’s Mediated Matter Group made a video showing off their first of its kind optically transparent glass printing process. It will soothe your soul.

Called G3DP (Glass 3D Printing) and developed in collaboration with MIT’s Glass Lab, the process is an additive manufacturing platform with dual heated chambers. The upper chamber is a “Kiln Cartridge,” operating at a mind-boggling 1900°F, while the lower chamber works to anneal (heat then cool in order to soften the glass). The special 3D printer is not creating glass from scratch, but rather working with the preexisting substance, then layering and building out fantastical shapes like a robot glassblower.

It’s wonderfully soothing to watch in action—and strangely delicious-looking. “Like warm frosting,” my colleague Andrew Liszewski confirmed. “Center of the Earth warm frosting.”

gizmodo.com

by Kaila Hale-Stern |  8/20/15 4:30pm

Drugs of the future

http://smallbiztrends.com/2015/08/3d-printing-drugs-spritam-aprecia-pharmaceuticals.html

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Could 3D Printers Manufacture the Drugs of the Future?

You can now use 3D printing to create items using a wide range of filaments, and not just plastics. Metals, edibles, bio and construction materials are just some of the examples that are being developed for 3D printing.

So it shouldn’t come as a surprise when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Spritam, an epilepsy medication made using 3D printers.

This makes Spritam the first 3D printed product approved by the FDA for use inside the human body.

The company that developed it, Aprecia Pharmaceuticals, used powder-liquid three-dimensional printing (3DP) technology, which was developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the late 1980s as a rapid-prototyping technique. Rapid prototyping is the same technique used in 3D printing.

According to the company, this specific process was expanded into tissue engineering and pharmaceutical use from 1993 to 2003.

After acquiring exclusive license to MIT’s 3DP process, Aprecia developed the ZipDose Technology platform. The medication delivery process allows high doses of up to 1,000 mg to rapidly disintegrate on contact with liquid. This is achieved by breaking the bonds that were created during the 3DP process.

If you advance the technology a decade or more, having the medication you need printed at home is not that implausible. While big-pharma may have something to say about it, new business opportunities will be created that will be able to monetize the technology.

As impressive as that sounds, there are many more medical applications in the pipeline.

The National Institute of Health (NIH) has a website with an extensive database of 3D printing applications in the medical field. This includes the NIH 3D Print Exchange special collection for prosthetics, which lets you print next generation prosthetics at a fraction of the cost of the ones now being sold in the marketplace.

The next evolution in the field of medicine is printing complex living tissues. Also known as bio-printing, the potential applications in regenerative medicine is incredible.

In conjunction with stem cell research, printing human organs is not as far-fetched as it sounds. Currently different body parts have been printed, and the days of long transplant waiting lists will eventually become a thing of the past.

It’s important to remember that a lot more goes into the creation of a medication or other medical break-through than just being able to “print” drugs. Other costs include intensive research and development and then exhaustive testing.

So there’s no reason to believe 3D printing alone will allow smaller drug firms to more effectively compete with huge pharmaceutical firms. But the break through will certainly create more opportunities in the medical industry for companies of all sizes.

Outside of medicine, 3D printing has been used to print cars, clothes and even guns, which goes to prove the only limitation of this technology is your imagination.

Many of the technologies we use today were developed many years ago, but they take some time before they are ready for the marketplace.

3D printing is one great example. It was invented in 1984, but its full potential is just now being realized.

In 2012, The Economist labeled this technology as, “The Third Industrial Revolution,” and that sentiment has been echoed by many since then. This has generated unrealistic expectations, even though it is evolving at an impressive rate.

smallbiztrends.com

by Michael Guta | Aug 10, 2015

3D printed “photosynthetic wearable”

http://www.dezeen.com/2015/06/01/neri-oxman-3d-printing-photosynthetic-wearable-host-living-organisms-mit-mediated-matter/

Neri Oxman 3D prints “photosynthetic wearable” to host living organisms

Designer and researcher Neri Oxman has successfully 3D-printed one of her“wearable skins” and filled its hollow tubes with a luminescent liquid to represent how it could host photosynthetic organisms (+ slideshow).

During a TED talk in Vancouver earlier this year, Oxman demonstrated that she and members of the Mediated Matter group at MIT Media Lab were able to produce Mushtari – one of four wearable pieces in her Wanderers range.

The wearable structures in the collection were designed to facilitate synthetic biological processes that might one day allow humans to travel to and survive on other planets.

Using triple-jet technology supplied by 3D-printing company Stratasys, the team was able to create the sculpture in one piece from a combination of different plastic materials that produced various densities and transparencies.

“This is the first time that 3D-printing technology has been used to produce a photosynthetic wearable piece with hollow internal channels designed to house microorganisms,” said Oxman.

Neri Oxman's photosynthetic wearable

The structure’s series of channels are designed to allow liquid to flow through. The idea is that they could house photosynthetic organisms, which would generate energy from light and somehow pass this onto the garment’s wearer.

“Inspired by the human gastrointestinal tract, Mushtari is designed to host synthetic microorganisms – a co-culture of photosynthetic cyanobacteria and E. coli bacteria – that can fluoresce bright colours in darkness and produce sugar or biofuels when exposed to the sun.”

“Such functions will, in the near future, augment the wearer by scanning our skins, repairing damaged tissue and sustaining our bodies, an experiment that has never been attempted before,” she added.

The 58 metres of fluid channels that are wound within the structure have an inner-channel diameter ranging from 1 millimetre to 2.5 centimetres.

Neri Oxman's photosynthetic wearable

Translucent and transparent sections of the tubes allow light to penetrate into the interior so the organisms could use it to photosynthesise.

Oxman’s team has managed to flow liquid containing cyanobacteria – bacteria that obtain energy through photosynthesis – through a small section of the tubes. The team has not yet demonstrated that the bacteria can photosynthesise while inside the structure, but is continuing to test the compatibility of the printed materials with the microorganisms.

“In the end, it is clear that the incorporation of synthetic biology in 3D-printed products for wearable microbiomes will enable the transition from designs that are inspired by nature, to designs made with and by nature, to, possibly designing nature herself,” Oxman said.

References:

dezeen.com

Neri Oxman 3D prints “photosynthetic wearable” to host living organisms

3D printed future – did you think about it ?

https://hbr.org/2015/05/the-time-to-think-about-the-3d-printed-future-is-now

MAY15_06_28731679_horz_b

The Time to Think About the 3D Printed Future Is Now

3-D printing, or additive manufacturing, is likely to revolutionize business in the next several years. Often dismissed in the popular mindset as a tool for home-based “makers” of toys and trinkets, the technology is gaining momentum in large-scale industry. Already it has moved well beyond prototyping and, as I explain in a new HBR article, it will increasingly be used to produce high-volume parts and products in several industries.

Since I prepared that article, new developments have only strengthened the case for a 3-D future – and heightened the urgency for management teams to adjust their strategies. Impressive next-generation technologies are overcoming the last generation’s drawbacks while adding new capabilities. This progress will speed up adoption and propel more experimentation and practical application. What was a niche technique is morphing into a broad-based movement driven by multiple technologies and many kinds of companies.

Many of the new developments have to do with broadening the science underpinning additive manufacturing. Early generations drew from physics and engineering. The new technologies are expanding the playbook into chemistry.Continuous light interface production, or CLIP, uses chemical reactions to better control the transformation of liquids into solids. Instead of slowly putting down a layer of material and then curing it, CLIP creates a monolithic product in what is essentially a continuous process. CLIP greatly speeds up production and boosts the material strength of the final product by cutting down on the problems created by layers. The inventors, who publicly announced this new approach in March, say they were inspired by the film “Terminator 2”  – specifically the scene where a robot reshapes itself after having melted into a puddle.

Another promising development is multi-jet fusion. This technology starts with a plastic or metal powder, but instead of solidifying the powder with a laser, it uses chemicals sprayed from 30,000 tiny nozzles at a rate of 350 million dots per second. These chemicals speed the shaping and hardening of the powder by a UV lamp. But importantly, in the future, the chemicals can also change the powdered material’s properties – adding color, elasticity, bacteria-resistance, hardness, and texture to the final product. And because the high-tech nozzles spray so quickly and precisely, the curing takes only a tenth of the time of existing 3D processes. Typical of next generation advances, it integrates a number of techniques that had been used separately.

Even more intriguing, though probably still years away, is what MIT calls 4-D printing, where the fourth dimension is time. These are objects embedded with “memory materials” that react to light or heat to form new shapes after delivery to the consumer. Imagine a piece of furniture that arrives flat, but then reshapes itself into a chair when exposed to sunlight.

And these are just the general-purpose technologies. Also emerging isxerographic micro-assembly, which promises to greatly improve computer chip manufacture by implanting components of chips with electrical charges and putting them in a highly conductive fluid. Electrical fields can then assemble these “chiplets” into full chips with greater capabilities and fewer defects than conventional chip production. Likewise in bio-printing, researchers are adding magnetic nanoparticles to living cells and then using magnetic fields to assemble the cells into artificial tumors and functioning tissues.

Big players are involved now in pushing additive manufacturing to the next level. Early phases of 3D printing involved startup companies with investments in the low seven digits. Stratasys and 3D Systems grew into industry leaders with approximately $1 billion in revenues each. Now we’re seeing much bigger stakes. Hewlett-Packard developed multi-jet fusion, leveraging its expertise in printer head technology to leapfrog the industry. CLIP comes from a startup,Carbon3D, but one with $40 million in funding from a VC group led by mainstay Sequoia Capital. MIT is investing heavily in 4-D printing. Xerox, which invented xerographic micro-assembly, had been testing the waters with an investment in startup 3D Systems. Once it saw the potential, it launched a major internal program leveraging many facets of its electronics expertise as well.

These organizations are putting their reputations as well as major capital investments on the line, and have a lot to lose if these technologies turn out to be vaporware. Carbon3D promises to release its first commercial printer by December of this year, while HP has a target date of January 2016.

The market is taking these claims seriously, as well. Both 3D Systems and Stratasys have seen their stock prices slide in recent months, in part because the market is worried about the next generation of technologies and the resources that giants like HP are putting behind them. Realizing they can’t spend like the giants, the early leaders have started shifting their R&D away from hardware and moving toward software, services, and consulting. The 3D printing ecosystem is still very much in flux.

In the midst of all this change, new strategies are required. Even if some of these new technologies fail to pan out, there’s so much activity going on, so much money and creativity now being applied, that we can safely expect the pace of additive manufacturing to pick up. That has two major implications for strategists. One is that timelines based on earlier generations of additive manufacturing may be too conservative. If the new technologies dramatically boost the speed and strength of 3D printing, then adoption rates will jump. The cost advantage of conventional “subtractive” manufacturing will disappear sooner than expected. The new capabilities to customize products will also be highly attractive. Digital platforms that coordinate 3D printing ecosystems will emerge sooner. Instead of moving incrementally to adopt 3D techniques into their organization, companies may need to pick up the pace.

Second, strategists will have to consider not only which technology to run with, but also whether to collaborate with these next generation pioneers. By partnering with, say, HP or Carbon3D, companies stand to gain earlier access. But they may also increase the risk if their chosen technology fails to meet its promise on schedule. Working with current 3D technologies, such as extrusion-, stereolithographic- and sintering-based methods has better odds but a smaller payoff. Such decisions could lead to internal strife between converts to each camp.  Companies could invest in both, but then they face the challenge of timing the switch over to the next generation, and the complexity of transitioning people and the organization from one to another, as well as the specter of writing off investments before they have been recaptured.

All of this is on top of the new level of complexity that 3D printing has brought to manufacturing generally.  What’s the proper mix of traditional “subtractive” methods with the new additive approaches. How much risk should a firm take on now, versus what’s the risk if you wait? And all of this raises the possibility of reshoring some operations, affecting established relationships with host governments and local unions.

Strategists, fasten your seat belts for a fun but bumpy ride.  Here’s where you show what you’re made of.

hbr.org

by Richard D’Aveni | MAY 06, 2015

 

3D printed film

http://3dprint.com/57088/3d-printed-animated-film/

f1

Animator Creates a 3D Printed Film Using 2,500 3D Printed Pieces

Gilles-Alexandre Deschaud has worked in the visual effects industry as a digital artist and animator for the last seven years, and during that time he’s experimented with various animation techniques which made use of painting and drawing.

At the moment, Deschaud is doing his PhD research at the Université Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis in Motion Picture and Film studies, but it’s his most recent experimentation – and the discovery of 3D printing – that led him to create Chase Me, a hauntingly beautiful stop-motion animation film.

Over the course of two years, Deschaud modeled and built 2,500 3D printed pieces which he then manipulated to make Chase Me, a story about a young girl embracing her fears — and turning them into something beautiful.

He designed each frame of the film in CG before translating the images for processing via 3D printing. All the sets and characters for Chase Me were printed at 100 micron resolution, and Deschaud says they required only minimal finishing once the support material was removed.

“When I first saw the Form 1 3D printer on Kickstarter, I knew that was what I needed to make a 3D printed film,” he says. “I wanted to bring 3D printing technology to the art of stop-motion animation to create a new kind of film. I wouldn’t been able to have such tiny, complex and detailed prints without the Form 1 printer.”

One of the very detailed set pieces, a gnarled tree, took about a week to print on the Form 1+ and it’s composed of 22 separate parts. The finished project was about 50 x 40 x 35 cm, and the ground beneath the tree was sculpted from plasticine before all the pieces were bent and glued together. It’s but one feature of the dozen sets which Deschaud built for the film.

In total, the character and set pieces consumed some 80 liters of resin to create. The process of making all the various sets and character required approximately 10 months of continuous printing, and the artist says that represents some 6,000 hours in total.

“Users like Gilles-Alexandre, who are doing incredible things with the Formlabs 3D printer, inspire us to keep doing what we do,” says ” says Max Lobovksy, the co-founder of Formlabs.”Chase Me is beautiful – and powerfully moving – both in aesthetics and its attention to detail.”

You can find out more about Deschaud’s film by visiting chasemefilm.com.

Formlabs was founded in 2012 by a team of engineers and designers from the MIT Media Lab and Center for Bits and Atoms. Their SLA printers are used with a suite of high-performance materials for 3D printing and intuitive 3D printing software.

What do you think of the sets and characters created for Chase Me? Let us know in the 3D Printed Animation forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out more images from Chase Me below.

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Screen+Shot+2015-03-09+at+6.28.50+PM

tree3Dprint

chasme film gilles-alexandre deschaud

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3dprint.com

by  | APRIL 14, 2015

The stories of 3D printing

http://3dprint.com/57322/stories-we-missed-april-11/

mit-student-beats-cancer-shares-experience-digital-models-3d-prints-1

3D Printing: The Stories We Didn’t Cover This Week – April 11, 2015

This week’s 3D printing stories we didn’t cover run the gamut from quite serious to whimsical, beginning with serious news of an MIT student’s use of 3D printing to document his brain tumor diagnosis and treatment, to a new Minecraft-inspired 3D design app, more Ultimaker files released, Taiwan’s new Fab Trucks, an Instructable for a homemade 3D scanner, and fun printed fashion and food news, too.

MIT Doctoral Student Documents Brain Tumor

Steven Keating, an MIT doctoral student in the Mediated Matter Group, used 3D printing to document his experience during the diagnosis and treatment of a tennis ball-size brain tumor. Keating’s experience and background in data management and additive manufacturing was used to create digital and 3D printed models of his tumor, brain, and skull surgery. Not only did he intend to share important medical knowledge with people in similar situations, but he also wanted to show how 3D printing can help people take charge and be centrally involved in their own medical treatment. And he did just this. His surgery was videotaped and he’s advocating an open approach to usually private medical information in the spirit of collaboration, with 3D printing centrally involved.

Minecraft-Inspired 3D Design App Launches

beta-for-the-cube-app-launches-1

A Minecraft inspired UNTITLED Creator app created by Thailand-based Treebuild makes 3D design more fun and user-friendly at the same time. You can use theLUBAS app to make pixelated artwork while also nostalgically indulging in Minecraft-esque imagery. Even better is that you can easily export your designs or choose to save the work into STL, OBJ, X3D, 3DDOM, HTML, or VRML. You can also send them to a 3D printing service that can print the design and ship them to your doorstep. We covered its beta release last month, and now the app is up and running.

Ultimaker Releases More Open Source Files

ultimaker-original-3

3D printer manufacturer Ultimaker has gone out of its way to facilitate its customers’ central involvement in the making and upgrading of their 3D printers. The company continues to show its commitment to the open source movement and the maker spirit, recently launching its Ultimaker Original+ and Ultimaker heated bed upgrade files, which you can access on GitHub.

Printer manuals, assembly instructions, and mechanics are all improved with the launching of these files, and the company continues to express its dedication to customers as the 3D printing technology develops and evolves.

Taiwan’s Fab Trucks for 3D Printing High School Education

fab-trucks-to-promote-3d-printing-by-visiting-497-campuses-1

Taiwanese officials have shown great support for 3D printing technology, and in a recent turn of events, the country has decided to dedicate resources over the next two years to ensure more high school age students gain exposure to 3D printing. Fab Trucks — maker labs on wheels — will visit almost 500 high schools throughout Taiwan, reaching 160,000 students and teachers. The Ministry of Education has spent $224K (USD) on the six laboratory trucks equipped with professional 3D printing-related equipment. This equipment includes DLP (light curing) and FDM 3D printers, laser cutters, a CNC milling machine, and additional accessories and materials. Students will be encouraged to use the trucks as much as possible when they are available on their campuses in the hopes that Taiwan and the world will see a new generation of makers and 3D printing innovators on the horizon.

FIT Student 3D Prints Captivating Fashion Piece

student-3d-prints-inspiring-neckpiece-accessory-for-the-ny3d-print-fashion-show-1

The relevance of 3D printing for a growing number of students can also be found in a Fashion Institute of Technology student’s project that used 3D printing to make an elaborate neck and matching dress piece. Rachel Nhan took her class assignment theme “Mad Max Meets the French Court” to heart as she designed a piece that perfectly merges these seemingly disparate themes into one captivating design.

After considering 25 different design concepts, Nhan used Autodesk Maya to create the selected model, which was split into 14 pieces and 3D printed by FIT’s PrintFX Lab on a uPrint Stratasys Machine with a 6″ x 8″ x 6″ printing bed. Nhan reports having some difficulty fitting the different components onto the print bed, but you would never know she had any difficulties by looking at the finished product. Capturing the Mad Max/French Court theme quite well, Nhan’s piece is also a reminder of 3D printing’s growing popularity in the fashion design world, as more and more people rely on it to realize their own customized, outlandish, and futuristic fashion visions.

Danish Teacher Makes 3D Scanner

teacher-shares-designs-for-low-cost-scanner-4

While students (like FIT’s Nhan) continue to use 3D printing in a wide variety of applications, teachers are also a standout source of knowledge and innovation in the 3D printing scene. Using webcams, a video projector, and other household items, Danish teacher Hesam Hamidi has made a perfectly functional structured light 3D scanner — a scanning device that measures objects’ three-dimensional shapes using a camera system and projected light patterns. This project is called “HHSL3DS” and Hamidi, who has been working in Denmark’s Copenhagen Fablab for some time, shared all of his designs and even the software and code he has written for it online. You can find entire tutorial, as well as all the downloadable files, on Instructables.

World’s First 3D Printed Food Conference in Netherlands

Logo-3D-Food-Printing

For those who get excited about the merging of culinary arts and 3D printing technology, good news: the world’s first 3D printed food conference will take place in Venlo, the Netherlands on April 21, 2015. This conference promises to bring printed food from “hype to reality,” while addressing important questions such as: “Which industries will be influenced by the technology?” “Which food components can be printed in the near future?” “Which aspects should be taken into account to ensure safety and maintainability of 3D printed food?” Also, topics to be explored, which are also listed on the official conference website, include: food components (protein, carbohydrates, and fats); custom nutrition; food processing and design; safety issues; new value chains; applications for the elderly and the health care industry; hardware and software developments; business models and legal issues. There’s still time to register on the conference website if you are in that growing group of 3D printed food fans!

That covers all the stories we missed this week! Let us know what you think of them in the Stories We Didn’t Cover forum thread at 3DPB.com.

all

3dprint.com

by  | APRIL 11, 2015

Develop body armor inspired by fish scales

http://3dprint.com/56694/scale-inspired-body-armor/

3dp_scale_armor_Professor_Stephan_Rudykh

US Army is Using 3D Printing to Develop Body Armor Inspired by Fish Scales

A collaboration between American and Israeli researchers has produced a prototype of a new type of body armor inspired by the flexibility of fish scales and other naturally occurring imbricated body armor. The armor prototype was designed to maximize the wearer’s ability to move unencumbered while providing significantly more protection than standard Kevlar body armor.

While scale armor has been used for centuries, examples very often had very little in common with the fish scales that inspired it. They were made of rigid plates crudely attached to each other and offering little in the way of maneuverability. But the body armor developed by MIT and Technion does more than simply look like the scales that inspired it and actually creates multiple layers of rigidity and flexibility, just like real fish scales. The outer layers of the body armor is made of stiff plates while being attached to a highly flexible under-layer.

“Many species of fish are flexible, but they are also protected by hard scales,”explained project lead Professor Stephan Rudykh of the American Technion Society. “The secret behind this material is in the combination and design of hard scales above with soft, flexible tissue below.”

The key is altering the shape and size of the scales depending on what part of the body is being covered; this allows the user to have more protection in areas that require less flexibility and a greater degree of motion than typical body armor would allow. The flexibility ratio was calculated using a new metric developed especially for this project called “protector-flexibility.”

3dp_scale_armor_test

The armor is being 3D printed on the Objet500 Connex from Stratasys which allows for multiple printing materials to be used at the same time. This allowed researchers to experiment with altering the density of the scales until they found an ideal ratio that increased the resistance to penetration by a factor of 40 with only a reduction in flexibility of a factor of five.

And the armor can even be customized to suit the wearer’s body and individual preferences, so users can sacrifice flexibility for durability depending on the specific mission requirements. Mission parameters are going to vary between a sniper hiding in dense foliage to a Navy SEAL engaging hostiles. Current body armor options are made of Kevlar fibers and offers a lot less mission-specific adaptability.

The MIT research was backed by the US Army Research Office, which is clearly looking for alternative combat armor options and the prototype will be tested for military applications and for its effectiveness in stopping projectiles. But because of the flexibility of the prototype, varieties of the new type of scale armor can also be adapted to help protect astronauts from ambient radiation or micro-meteorites while performing actions while on a space walk.

This isn’t the first time that nature has inspired advances in technology and it isn’t even the first time that modern 3D printed scale armor has been researched. However, Rudykh and his team have taken it to the next level by bringing the armor to the prototype stage for testing. It is very likely that our future military personnel and law enforcement officers will be custom fitted with 3D printed body armor that was created specifically for their bodies and individual duties.

“Our findings provide new guidelines for developing simple material architectures that retain flexibility while offering protection with highly tunable properties,” concluded the researchers. “The tailored performance of the protective system – with characteristics that can be tuned according to the required movements at different regions of the body – draws its abilities from the microstructural geometry. The ability for a given microstructure to offer different deformation resistance mechanisms is key to achieving the multifunctional design of stiff plates and soft matrix. We found that careful selection of microstructural characteristics can provide designs optimized for protection against penetration while preserving flexibility.”

What do you think about the latest 3D printed advancement that was inspired by nature? You can discuss it on the 3D Printed Fish Scale Inspired Body Armor forum thread over on 3DPB.com.

3dprint.com

by  | APRIL 8, 2015

3D printed historical objects

A bit of 3D printing history has come to light! 🙂

Printed in the late 1990’s by Professor Ely Sachs (the person to actually coin the phrase ‘3D printing’) this replica of the 1,500 year-old monument in Istanbul is one of a handful of prints created in the original MIT 3D printing lab. Most of the other prints are now lost.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/old-3d-print-of-hagia-soph…

The 3D print model of the Hagia Sophia was printed by the original MIT 3D printing lab in the late 1990s. It is now owned by a 3D print enthusiast.

In the 1990s Professor Ely Sachs of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was the first person to coin the phrase “3D printing.” Utilizing a printer, which worked with alumina powder and a binding agent, several prints were created in surprising detail for the mid-1990s. Most of these prints were lost, but one has recently emerged, a 3D print of the Hagia Sophia.

The actual print, which measures just four centimeters across and depicts the nearly 1,500-year-old building in Istanbul, was given to a man named Branden Gunn, who works in 3D printing and runs the blog Engunneer. He was given the object by Jim Serdy, who worked with Sachs at MIT in 1990s.

Printed in original MIT 3D printing lab

“We were actually at a company beach party when I was talking with Jim about 3D printing in general, and he went to get the model for me from his car,” Gunn told 3DPrint.com when talking about the old 3D print of the Hagia Sophia. “I was not expecting it as a gift,” he added.

The 3D print model of the Hagia Sophia was printed by the original MIT 3D printing lab in the late 1990s. The model itself has features in the 50-100 micron size range, printed in Alumina, and fired into a ceramic.

The model features the internal geometry of the structure as well. The printer that made the model can be seen at the MIT Museum. Serdy said very few similar prints were done at MIT, and even fewer remain in existence today.

References:

3D printing with ice cream?

I scream! You scream!!

We all…. 3D print our ice cream?

http://www.3ders.org/…/20140717-3d-printing-with-ice-cream-…

We Scream for Ice Cream! Three students at MIT, Kyle Hounsell, Kristine Bunker, and David Donghyun Kim have created a ice cream printer using the principals of a fused deposition model printer.

Using a Cuisinart ice cream maker and a Solidoodle 3D printer, the team developed a device that prints soft serve ice cream. The modified 3D printer is housed inside of a small freezer and the extruded soft serve freezes as a line of liquid nitrogen blasts and keep it solid.

“We were inspired to design this printer because we wanted to make something fun with this up and coming technology in a way that we could grab the attention of kids. We felt that it was just as important to come up with a new technology as it was to interest the younger generation in pursuing science and technology so we can continue pushing the limits of what is possible.” Bunker told 3ders.org.

“First, we needed to print into a cooled environment so that the ice cream would hold its shape once printed.” the students explained. “We bought a small upright freezer which was large enough to both put the Solidoodle inside and allow for the full build volume we were aiming for.”

Then they needed a shield gas to solidify the ice cream as soon as it came out of the extruder. They built a system to spray liquid nitrogen onto the ice cream as it was extruded. “To ensure that the extruded ice cream ended up with constant characteristics, the cryogen line was bent in a circle to go all the way around the extruder and spray the liquid nitrogen evenly around the printed ice cream.” they explained.

Next the team needed to modify the Solidoodle 3D printer. The print bed had to be located outside of the original Solidoodle enclosure because the original print bed is located low in the enclosure making it difficult to fit the ice cream extruder nozzle and the cryogen line inside with it.

In order to be able to move the rigid cryogen line with the extruder head, they took the extruder head off of the Solidoodle and replacing it with “a printed ABS fitting with three holes to allow vertical movement of thin rods holding the print bed above the Solidoodle.”

Finally, they also needed to include a temperature control system for the printer to maintain the extruder nozzle temperature. Additionally extrusion nozzle needed to be kept around 18°F as soft serve is typically extruded around 18°F and starts to melt at 20°F.

Last, they settled on 1/8″ diameter extruder head for the ice cream to optimize the speed and size of the ice cream treat printed. “We felt that waiting more than 10-15 minutes for an ice cream to be printed would cause the consumer to lose interest.” they explained. “Additionally, this was a short enough time for the ice cream to keep its shape in the freezer would excessive liquid nitrogen being poured onto it. With a 1/8″ diameter we knew we could achieve some level of detail to get fun shapes but still print at a reasonable rate.”

With the cryogen line installed their final setting for printing is a 3mm layer height and 16mm/sec print speed.

“In general this technology would not be replacing any existing products or technology.” the students explained. “This is a novel process that we hope will get kids excited about the potential of the technology. We imagine this technology being marketable in ice cream parlors such as Dairy Queen where customers can order an ice cream treat, wait 15 minutes, and see the shape they chose be created. Of course last, and more importantly, we aim to enjoy the ice cream after successful printing!”

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