3D Printing News

A note of caution to our viewers: many of these products are only available for pre-ordering and have yet to be manufactured. Others are only hopes/dreams. Hyperbole is the language of choice, so be careful!

Additionally, be forewarned that some of the materials you intend to work with may be toxic.

Researchers in Madrid have successfully bioprinted a prototype human skin which is fully functional. The new skin has an epidermis, a dermis, and a third layer with fibroblasts that make collagen. The scientists used biolinks in place of cartridges and colored inks. They also used human cells which can create their own collagen.

Inspired by a humanoid robot called Asimo, Honda has developed a walking assistant to help people who have difficulty walking. The device has two motors, a battery, and a computer. It records hip angle movement and sends this information to a tablet, which manages the stress load of someone's legs and reduces fatigue.

Funeral homes in China are using 3D printing to recreate faces for corpses that have been disfigured, so that the casket can be opened.

A new design for train seats has been created in prototype by a Hungarian manufacturer of automotive parts. Called POLGAR KFT, the company says it saved both time and money using 3D printing; the prototype was functional in only 3 weeks. It took 37 parts during a period of 500 hours to complete the 3D printed seat.

A designer in Australia has used 3D printing to make an entire dress. Charne Esterhuizen uses 130 - 150 3D printed rubber butterflies, each of which takes five and a half hours to print. The dress itself cost roughly $90,000. to make. The butterflies were 3D printed in both Australia and Poland.

A start-up called Print the Future is offering custom 3D printed furniture with a pop-up store in New York City. The company is planning more stores, in San Francisco, Miami, Chicago and Austin. The furniture will be manufactured on-site in less than 24 hours.

Micron 3D announced in 2015 that they were able to 3D print molten glass in high resolution. Now they have finished the first fully operational machine inside of their own factory. The process uses very high temperatures (above 1000 degrees c.) which presents rather complex challenges but they feel they have solved the problems.

The European Patent Office has granted a patent to Oxford Performance Materials, Inc. (OEM) to produce polymer-based implants for bone replacements. Using laser sintering, OEM will 3D print its OsteoFab products for orthopedic and neurological uses. They will also contract out their process to others.

Stratasys is accepting applications to study the feasibility of 3D printing heart models, to determine the possibility of using them in pre-op situations. The study is called 3DHEART (3D Hearts Enabling A Randomised Trial), and plans to develop patient-specific prototypes. Several hospitals are participating, with emphasis on pediatric congenital heart conditions.

A company called Guardlab is 3D printing mouth guards for the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championships). Guardlab uses scanning and 3D printing to avoid the messy process of making mouth molds with a putty-like material.

All 3DP has written a trouble-shooting guide to help you identify and resolve problems with your 3D printer. 23 problems are identified and reviewed, from warping, to cracks in tall objects, to misaligned layers.

Apis Cor Construction Company has built a small house in 24 hours costing roughly $10.000. The home measures 400 square feet and is located about 60 miles south of Moscow. Attached is a "making-of" video to explain the process.

Cooksongold E-Manufacturing is a service bureau that will 3D print jewelry based on your own designs.

Researchers at the Australian National University have made a very small device that produces the best-quality holographic images ever seen. The process works by accurately manipulating light in 3 dimensions, using a new transparent nanomaterial to make the projections. Involved are millions of minute silicon pillars, each one up to 500 times smaller than a human hair, which become the projectors for the light.

A new type of procedure for breast reconstruction after surgery for cancer has been developed at the Up-Tex textile competitive cluster. Working with surgeons and biologists, the new process combines 3D printing and the lace designs which are well known in Calais, France. Called the MAT (T) ISSE Project, it is the basis for a startup called Lattice Medical. Warning: this procedure has not been tested on human subjects yet.

Note: we review hundreds of articles each month, culling the most significant for you. We also welcome suggestions from our viewers for products and processes that we may have missed.

c.Corinne Whitaker 2017