In the course of my diligent efforts to keep you good people up to date on the state of additive manufacturing (AM), I come across many interesting news items. I’ll gather them up every so often and present them in a Rapid Ready Roundup (like this one). You can find the last Roundup here.
We’ll start today’s Roundup with a NAMII update. Hot on the heels on a recent announcement that seven AM projects have received $4.5 million in funding from NAMII, comes news of further funding from the research and development center. Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), a member of NAMII, has been granted new funding to develop two different AM-related projects.
The first project is aimed at determining the quality of parts created using 3D printing. CMU will evaluate large batches of parts to determine how consistently they hold up to the stresses of use. The second project under way with the cooperation of Pennsylvania State University (PSU) is focused on analyzing various AM processes via thermal imaging. This research is meant to determine the manner in which heat affects 3D printing.
Moving on, Geomagic has announced the release of Geomagic Design, a new CAD software suite. Design offers full CAD design, a 2D documentation module, a sheet metal design module, and will work with other Geomagic products. The full suite will retail for $1,999 and Design Personal, for students, hobbyists and makers, is available for $199. Geomagic is also offering a free trial.
“We are committed to democratizing access to powerful and affordable 3D design software for the benefit of professionals and beginners alike,” said Calvin Hur, vice president and general manager, 3D Systems authoring tools. “This release builds on that commitment by delivering powerful and capable design tools that are easy to pick up and hard to put down.”
Next, I have a word of caution for potential investors looking for an AM company to back. A “company” named Massive Dynamics (that name should sound familiar to any Fringe fans) is claiming to produce 3D printers along with other technological gadgets. The company has authored a number of press releases that have been posted to other sites, including major news outlets such as Reuters.
Rapid Ready has chosen not to report on Massive Dynamics because we are unable to verify that the company actually exists. The website provides no solid information of any kind. I’ve not been able to find any images of the products the company purports to sell, nor have I been able to find any other sources outside of company press releases that mention business dealings with the company. Caveat emptor.
Finally, we turn to GlaDOS to brighten our days. Pulled from the popular video game Portal, comes a ceiling lamp that was built using AM and designed to mimic the form of the psychotic AI program. The plans can be found on Thingiverse and the creator has even hooked up mini GlaDOS with enough electronics to give it some movement. For Portal fans, this is a triumph.
Below you’ll find a video of the GlaDOS lamp.