3D Printing Basics Explained
3D printing technology will produce another manufacturing revolution, transitioning us from the era of mass production to personal production. He predicts a world where unique items will be produced as required by individuals, and we won’t be forced to accept identical mass produced items. He says:
Have you ever wondered how 3D printing of silver or other precious metals is done? i.Materialise explains how they do it.
You might think you’d require a fancy and expensive industrial metal printing machine that laser-fuses precious metal nanoparticles together into amazing jewelry, but you’d be wrong. Sure, you can use such machines to 3D print a variety of metals, but metal 3D printing can be done in a much simpler fashion with far less expensive equipment.
In the talk Lipton explains in a rather excited manner that the introduction of 3D printing technology will produce another manufacturing revolution, transitioning us from the era of mass production to personal production. He predicts a world where unique items will be produced as required by individuals, and we won’t be forced to accept identical mass produced items. He says:
- Extrusion — Extrusion is the process of melting material and piping it through a nozzle.
- Curing — When a 3D printed object is made from resin, the object always starts out as a vat of liquid.
- Jetting — Jetting printers “spray” layers of particles to create a three-dimensional shape.
- Fusion — Most 3D printing processes rely on some sort of fusion to bind particles.
The concept of 3D printing is quite different from conventional manufacturing, which is a subtractive process: material is removed — by cutting, milling, etc. — to reveal the desired object. In 3D printing it’s quite the opposite: you start with nothing and gradually add material to form the final object.
There are several key advantages to do so, mainly that there are virtually no geometric constraints on the shape of the item being printed, as the object is typically created layer by layer. Impossible shapes, like the “ship in a bottle”, are easily created.
First, what is 3D printer maintenance? It is a regular schedule of activities that should be undertaken at intervals to minimize the likelihood of unscheduled problems in the future. For example, if certain moving parts are not regularly lubricated, there may be a drop in quality or even print failures.
The process of calibration of 3D print parameters is usually the most tricky part of the job, as there are plenty of parameters and many trouble situations that may require resolution. Invariably this stage is accomplished by repeated 3D prints of a standard test object, with incrementally changing print parameters each time.
This week’s selection is “The Future Is Faster Than You Think” by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler.
Stratasys and DyeMansion announced a new strategic alliance that combines capabilities to provide an end-to-end full color additive manufacturing workflow.
Titan Robotics announced a new 3D printer, the massive Atlas-HS.
A company is 3D printing apparently edible food treats made from waste.
This week’s selection is the Air Powered Helicopter by Tom Stanton.
Once again we take a look at the valuations of the major 3D printing companies over the past week.
Charles R. Goulding and Ryan Donley analyze R&D expenditures of several leading companies in the 3D printing industry.
A company is offering perfectly-fitting swim goggles with 3D technology.
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