New Blood Recycling Machine Contains 3D Printed Parts

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

Rapid Ready Roundup: Stratasys, 3D Systems, Project Ara

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

Stratasys Acquires Solid Concepts and Harvest Technologies

The business world of additive manufacturing (AM) is still taking shape. The technology is still new enough that market leaders haven’t quite yet managed the level of global saturation as older tech companies, such as Apple or Microsoft. Part of the process of market maturation is acquisitions.

Stratasys has announced the acquisition of Solid Concepts and Harvest Technologies. Both companies are AM service bureaus, with Solid Concepts having a global presences and Harvest Technologies as mainly an US entity. Both companies will assist Stratasys with future growth, and provide additional resources for its in-house service bureau, RedEye. Continue reading

Stratasys Announces Finalists for Annual Extreme Redesign Contest

It’s probably fair to say that people around the world are beginning to expect great things from additive manufacturing (AM). With each advance in technology and expansion in application, 3D printing becomes further ingrained in manufacturing, and inspires creativity in the design and development process. One method to ensure the next generation of engineers and designers push the boundaries even further is by introducing students to AM.

Stratasys promotes 3D printing to students from middle school through college with its annual Extreme Redesign contest. This year’s contest received over 600 entries from around the world, including 12 different countries. Those entries were whittled down to 10 finalists from different categories (middle school/high school engineering, college engineering and art/architecture) and this year also included a bonus finalist in extreme sports. Continue reading

Optomec Receives Patent for Miniaturized Aerosol Jet Print Head

The battlefields of patent litigation have been fairly quiet recently, at least in the world of additive manufacturing (AM). That seems like a positive sign for the industry as a whole, allowing companies to focus on research and development, rather than courtroom theater. During this time of peace, new patents are finding their way to approval, and while not every patent is earth-shaking, some are worth examination.

Optomec has recently received a patent for its miniaturized aerosol jet print head, titled “Miniature Aerosol Jet and Aerosol Jet Array” (patent # 8,640,975). The patent ensures exclusivity for an aerosol jet print head design that is smaller, lighter, and less expensive to manufacture than previous iterations. The patent also leaves room for Optomec to grow, including provisions for multiplexing the miniaturized print head geometry within linear arrays or custom arrangements for high-volume production scale-up. Continue reading