The word “slow” is relative. If you are stuck on a two-lane highway behind an old granny out for her Sunday drive, it feels like you are moving slowly, but it’s only very recently that a single human could dream of transportation that moved at such a rapid pace. So, when people claim additive manufacturing (AM) is slow, that too is relative. Compared to plenty of traditional manufacturing situations, AM is positively speedy.
But we always want to go faster. A new partnership between Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Cincinnati, Inc. hopes to result in a 3D printer that is 500 times faster than current AM systems, and offers an improved build area of up 10 times current volume. Continue reading
Although additive manufacturing (AM) has been around for 20+ years, it’s fair to say that it’s just now beginning to make its mark. As the technology advances, some machines are becoming more specialized and targeted at specific types of industry, rather than just general use. While it’s true that even a specialized AM system is still going to have multiple uses, tweaking it just a little bit for specific purposes is a good business model.
With that we come to Arcam’s new electron beam melting system (EBM), the Arcam Q10. As is true for all EBM machines (ASTM directed energy deposition), the Q10 uses an electron beam to melt powdered metals. Commonly used metals include titanium and cobalt-chrome. This new design is meant to replace the A1 for orthopedic manufacturing. Continue reading
If you ask most people in the additive manufacturing (AM) industry who they believe is the most recognizable expert in the field, they’ll probably tell you Terry Wohlers, president and founder of Wohlers Associates. Wohlers has appeared on television, radio and in multiple forms of print media, extolling the virtues and explaining the workings of AM.
Wohlers makes the conference rounds, showing up to speak at nearly every important AM event. For the last 14 years, Wohlers Associates has held its own international conference to discuss AM and rapid manufacturing. This year’s conference will be held on November 29 at Euromold 2012.
Additive manufacturing (AM) is on plenty of people’s minds these days, including those in the U.S. government. In addition to the manufacturing initiative, Stratasys (Rapid Ready company profile here) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have partnered to further AM research. The partnership intends to improve Stratasys’ signature fused deposition modeling (FDM) process.
The joint venture is backed by the Department of Energy (DOE) and will use ORNL’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility to propel FDM into a more widely used manufacturing process. The DOE is pursuing AM research to reduce manufacturing energy consumption, increase global competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing, and reduce time to market for new consumer goods.