It’s sometimes easy to forget that additive manufacturing (AM) isn’t really a brand new technology. 3D printers toiled away in labs and back rooms for years cranking out prototypes and the occasional custom part without receiving much in the way of attention. Only recently, with the rollout of home AM systems, has the technology entered the general consumer’s consciousness.
One expression of increased awareness is the push to move 3D printers from the back of the shop to the front. Staples has been at the forefront of this movement, adding AM systems to store shelves, and offering AM printing services in Europe since last year. Now a new partnership with 3D Systems (3DS) will bring AM services to Staples in the US.
Behind the explosion in interest in additive manufacturing (AM) are a few simple facts that make the technology so appealing. Parts built through AM waste less material, are often quicker to produce, and can be much more complex than parts built using traditional manufacturing methods. These facts have led companies in every field, around the world to embrace 3D printing and experiment with new applications.
One of those new applications is a new blood recycling machine developed by Brightwake. Based in Nottinghamshire, UK, Brightwake is a “… creative development, engineering, production and research company specializing in the development of innovative solutions for all kinds of manufacturing, operational and logistical problems.” In this case, the creative development is called Hemosep and it was built in part using a Stratasys Dimension 1200es. Continue reading
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.
Today we’ll start with a couple pieces of news from Stratasys. First up, the company has released a new AM material called Endur. The new material is a simulated polypropylene for use with all Objet EdenV, Objet Connex, Objet500 Connex3 and Objet 30Pro AM systems. According to the company, Endur offers both high impact resistance and elongation at break, and has a heat-deflection temperature up to 129°F / 54°C (HDT @ 0.45MPa per ASTM D-648-06). Continue reading
More than a few eyebrows were raised when 3D Systems (3DS) first embarked on its growth through acquisitions strategy. A number of industry insiders wondered (privately) if the company would be able to successfully incorporate all the businesses the company had been picking up under one umbrella and make them work together. Time has shown the strategy to be sound with 3DS taking a lead position in additive manufacturing (AM) and 3D printing related properties.
Not even the speculation surrounding HP’s stated intent to enter the AM field has been able to dent 3DS’ push to promote itself as the top AM company, and its announcement of its plans for the Inside 3D Printing NYC Conference showcases its drive. 3DS calls its agenda “3D Printing 2.0,” and it includes the announcement of its newest AM system, the ProJet 1200, along with its full lineup of 2014 3D printers. Continue reading
In the course of my diligent efforts to keep you good people up to date on the state of additive manufacturing, 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.