This is a segment of the website where we do a quick list of the week’s smaller stories. Generally, this refers to stories that we couldn’t do a full length article about. It also gives us the opportunity to identify wider trends in the weekly 3D printing news. However, it’s worth noting that the purpose of these rundowns is identifying wider trends rather than listing off news items.
This week we’re covering news from the 14th to the 20th of March. It was a comparatively slow week for major news in the industry. In spite of this, there are still quite a few stories of interest.
Firstly, we have the week’s tech news. This week, Micron3DP announced a glass 3D printer. Previously, the company had mentioned that they’ve developed tech capable of printing molten glass. It relies on a technique similar to FDM. The glass material is heated up to 1000°C and then printed. The Beta units are expected to ship this year.
Another bit of tech news shows Chinese researchers are looking into liquid metal printing. Liquid metal printing has been previously employed by companies like Vader. It is also a relatively new form that is still in development.
DSM has unveiled a new material at the AMUG conference. This new material is meant for SLA printing. The company calls it the Somos Taurus. The material is grey, and thus mimics the look of traditional thermoplastics. The company emphasises its toughness and heat resistance. Fittingly, they wish to apply it to motorsports and automobile manufacturing.
In another news piece from China, China XD Plastics limited brokered a major business deal. The city of Nanchong is due to produce 300,000 metric tons of bio-composite materials. Chinese companies are meaning to use the materials for 3D printing. China’s move towards additive manufacturing is of keen interest to trade and business experts. This is because China’s main exports are in the field of manufactured goods. A move towards additive manufacturing implies a massive change in labour strategies and business tactics.
In other news, Caterpillar and FIT AG have teemed up for a new joint venture. Caterpillar and AG plan to bring experts to the forefront for their new production deal. The three-year partnership will bring together leaders in their fields to take advantage of the benefits of additive manufacturing specifically in the heavy equipment manufacturing space.
Finally, we have news about Optomec. Optomec is planning to unveil an aerosol jet 3D printer at iMAPS MicroTech Advanced Packaging and Technology Trends conference. The conference will take place at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) in England on March 16. Aerosol printing utilises commercially-available conductive, dielectric, semiconductor and biologic inks.
Firstly, Formlabs and 3Shape announce a new collaboration for Dental 3D printing. This partnership pertains mainly to materials. They have also announced 3 materials. The first is Dental Model, a resin with removable dyes. The second is Dental LT Clear, a bio-compatable resin for orthodontic appliances. And finally, they also announced two class IIa biocompatible materials for the direct 3D printing of dentures.
In America, 5 different Veterans Affairs hospitals have been given 3D printers for developing prosthetics. The Stratasys Mojo printers allow doctors and researchers to improve healthcare for veterans. Additionally, usage of the printers is available to facilities outside of the Veterans Affairs network. This is beneficial as it personalises the healthcare products for each patient.
- Fishy Filaments Develops Fish Nets: The company is using 3D printers to develop Nylon fishing nets. The purpose of this is so that other animals don’t get caught up in the fishing nets.