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.
Let’s start today’s Roundup with some general industry news. Gartner has prepared a new report on AM. The reports forecasts a 75% increase in sales for 3D printers under the $100,000 mark in 2014. Analysts predict that the falling prices of home 3D printers, combined with increased presence in brick-and-mortar stores will drive sales.
Combined spending on AM systems is expected to reach $669 million in 2014, representing an increase of 62%. According to Gartner, big business will continue to be the largest consumer of 3D printers in the coming year, amounting to $536 million in sales, with home systems accounting for $133 million. The report also concludes that by 2015 at least seven of the largest retail companies will offer 3D printers for general purchase. You can purchase the entire report here.
Moving on, Gary Shapiro, CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, announced that AM has grown to be such an integral part of the annual CES show that it has earned its own exhibit area starting with the 2014 show. Exhibitor space in the new 3D printing zone has already sold out, demonstrating the intense interest the technology show inspires.
In addition to the new 3D printing area, Shapiro claims 20,000 new products will premiere at CES 2014, drawn from more than 3,200 exhibitors. He estimates a draw of 150,000 attendees from more than 150 countries. CES 2014 will be held January 7-10 in Las Vegas.
Next up, we have news of a webinar to share. The Spanish Association of Rapid Manufacturing (ASERM) will be hosting a webinar on the challenges of standardization in additive manufacturing on Monday, October 7, beginning at 9 A.M. (GMT). You’ll find the webinar here.
The webinar will include an update on the standardization in AM in Europe, an overview of the SASAM project presented by Frits Feenstra (TNO), a description of current works in ISO/ASTM committees related to AM by Mario Monzón (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria University), and a general overview of the history and potential future of AM by Ian Gibson (National University of Singapore). The webinar will be made available via live stream, and virtual attendees will have the option to send in questions to the experts.
Last for today, I present the 3D printed toothbrush. For a mere $299 you can purchase a Blizzdent brush that is specifically designed and manufactured to fit your mouth and your teeth. Well, that’s not actually true. The brush runs at $299 and will last a year before you’ll need to pay another $159 for a replacement, but actually getting the dental scan required to build one will cost around $200 alone.
If you have the cash to burn, you’ll receive a brush that not only fits your mouth like a glove, made from SLA biocompatible plastics (according to the company), but also finishes the job of cleaning your mouth in around six seconds. Most dentists recommend brushing for at least two minutes with common toothbrush models, if you’ve forgotten since your last visit.
Below you’ll find the oddly disquieting computer animated video displaying how a Blizzdent brush does its work.