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3D printers: Almost mainstream

December 23, 2011

Robotic-Wallrover

Professional solid modeling tools such as AutoCAD and SolidWorks and 3D printer kits costing less than $1,500 are making 3D printing cost-effective and time-saving, says Computerworld in a comprehensive overview.

Richard Smith used a consumer-grade 3D “plastic jet printer” (The RapMan) and a computer-aided design (CAD) program to design a 3D model of the WallRover, cutting product delivery time from six months to two weeks.

Commercial models… read more

3D Printing and Self Replicating Machines In Your Living Room — Seriously!

April 10, 2009

Its like having a mini factory in your own home: the Reprap machine consists of a half-meter frame enclosing its fabrication workspace, motors, electronic circuitry and an extruder — a device that can squirt out complex three-dimensional patterns of molten plastic filaments that will ultimately solidify into the shape of your 3D object.

How it works: software on a PC takes design files produced by 3-D drawing programs and… read more

3D printing factory opens in New York City

October 20, 2012

(Credit: Shapeways)

Shapeways, a Netherlands-based online 3D printing company, has opened a “factory of the future” in Queens, New York that plans to house 50 high-resolution industrial 3D printers and print custom-designed products a year, Popular Science reports.

The company will allow customers to upload custom 3D designs, and then prints them using materials including acrylic, nylon, glass, gypsum, ceramic, and sandstone, and precious metals such as silver, and ships the… read more

3D printing for new tissues and organs

June 19, 2009

Rapid prototyping might one day allow kidney, liver and muscle tissues to be constructed in the laboratory from a patient’s own cells with close-to-natural detail ready for transplantation.

3D printing lowers environmental impact, says study

October 5, 2013

3d_printed_blocks_large

Making things at home on a 3D printer uses less energy — and therefore releases less carbon dioxide — than producing it in a factory and shipping it to a warehouse.

That’s according to a study led by Joshua Pearce, an associate professor of materials science and engineering/electrical and computer engineering at Michigan Technological University.

The team conducted life-cycle impact analyses on three products:… read more

3D printing may put global supply chains out of business: report

October 11, 2012

make_replicator_2

Will 3D printing make global supply chains unnecessary? That’s a real possibility, according to a recent report from Transport Intelligence, Smart Planet reports.

3D printing (or “additive manufacturing,” as it’s called in industrial circles) takes offshore manufacturing and brings it back close to the consumer. It has enormous potential to shift the trade balance. Goods will be cheaper to reproduce within the domestic market, versus manufacturing and then shipping them… read more

3D printing: ‘potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything’ — President Obama

February 13, 2013

(Credit: White House)

In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, U.S. President Barack Obama noted that “Our first priority is making America a magnet for new jobs and manufacturing. After shedding jobs for more than 10 years, our manufacturers have added about 500,000 jobs over the past three.

“Caterpillar is bringing jobs back from Japan. Ford is bringing jobs back from Mexico. After locating plants in other countries… read more

3D printing: the desktop drugstore

Printers that create artificial limbs, cheap drugs, and replacement organs could radically change medicine in poorer countries.
September 27, 2012

makerbot

A small Indian village is perhaps the last place you would expect to see the future of manufacturing, but in the Maharashtra region, there are plans to create one of the hottest pieces of technology around, BBC Future reports.

“Learning while doing” is the philosophy behind an educational project in Pabal called the Vigyan Ashram — part of a worldwide project called FabLab, set up… read more

3D Projection Without the Glasses

November 16, 2000

LAS VEGAS — Perhaps the most exciting technology at Comdex this year was a 3D display that projected volumetric images into thin air, prompting show goers to gasp, burst out laughing and run around the booth in excitement.
At the back of one of the exhibit halls, Dimensional Media set up a booth full of 3D displays that projected images — of objects such as cell phones or soda cans… read more

3D sketching system ‘revolutionizes’ design interaction and collaboration

University of Montreal researchers present their Hyve-3D system at SIGGRAPH 2014 conference
August 12, 2014

hyve3d-3

University of Montreal researchers have developed a collaborative 3D sketching system called Hyve-3D (Hybrid Virtual Environment 3D), which they presented at the SIGGRAPH 2014 conference in Vancouver this week.

“Hyve-3D is a new interface for 3D content creation via embodied and collaborative 3D sketching,” said lead researcher Professor Tomás Dorta of the university’s School of Design.

“The system is a… read more

3D solar-cell towers deliver up to 20 times more power per base area

March 28, 2012

Photovoltaic Array

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2012/three-dimensional-solar-energy-0327.html

MIT researchers are building cubes or towers that extend solar cells upward in three-dimensional configurations and show power output ranging from double to more than 20 times that of fixed flat panels with the same base area.

The biggest boosts in power were seen in the situations where improvements are most needed: in locations far from the equator, in winter months and on cloudier days.… read more

3D structure of HIV is ‘revealed’

January 25, 2006

The 3D structure of the HIV virus has been revealed for the first time, scientists say.

The variable size and shape of HIV has made it hard to map, the team said in the journal Structure. So the UK-German team took hundreds of images of viruses and used a computer program to combine them.

“Identifying how the virus grows will allow us to address the formation of this… read more

3D Systems partners with Singularity University to develop creative uses of 3D printing

October 24, 2012

ProJet HD3500 professional 3D printer (credit: 3D Systems)

3D printer leader 3D Systems announced today that it plans to provide Singularity University (SU) with several of its 3D printers.

“We are excited to be part of Singularity’s visionary initiative to democratize access to 3D content-to-print solutions that will enable greater entrepreneurialism and inventiveness,” said Abe Reichental, President and CEO of 3D Systems.

“SU has shown a great deal of foresight and leadership in… read more

3D Systems to unveil Cubify.com 3D design software at CES

January 8, 2012

Cubify

3D Systems Corporation plans to unveil at CES its Cubify.com 3D software for creating designs for 3D printing on mobile devices, tablets and Kinect.

The company will also showcase its new Cube 3D consumer printer and make available 3D collection libraries for it as downloads.

3D systems also plans an online print shop where users without the 3D printer can send their creations for… read more

3D Technology: Ready for the PC?

November 27, 2001

Technology advances such as accelerated graphics cards and graphics ports have driven PC hardware capabilities up and prices down, making 3D more accessible to consumers and furthering research on methods and algorithms.

Another key trends is overcoming network-bandwidth limitations by sending compressed content instead of full-resolution geometry.

3D graphics can be used to visualize objects and products prior to construction, model weather systems for meteorologists, study medical anomalies… read more

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