Dec.31, 2013

As the clock ticks down on 2013, it's a good time to take a look back at what happened this year in the 3D printing world. Included below are some big things that have happened since last January. The last 12 months were full of surprise: acquisitions, new 3D printer announcement, new inventions, new business models, etc. All happened in just one year.

We're thrilled you are with us through the whole year. We've made a lot of friends out of our readership and supporters over the years, and 2013 was no different. So, thank you for being part of the 3ders family.

Whatever your plans for New Year's Eve are, have a great night and a prosperous 2014. Happy New Year to you all, and thanks for a great 2013.

January

Dutch architect to build "endless" house with 3D printer -- Dutch architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars (39) from Universe Architecture in Amsterdam designed a one-piece building which will be built on a 3D printer.

5-meter long titanium airplane part 3D printed in one piece -- Chinese company manufactured a 5 meter long central wing spar with Laser Additive Manufacturing technology for Comac C919 passenger-plane which is expected to take place in 2014.

Open-source 3D printed RoboHand changes one little boy's life -- Liam is nearly 5 years old and was born with Ambiotic Band Syndrome. He has no fingers on his right hand. Richard in South Africa and Ivan in U.S. worked together and created a 3D printed RoboHand for Little Liam.

Make a DIY 3D bioprinter out of an old inkjet to print biomaterials

ESA works with Forster + Partners to build moon base using 3D printer -- The European Space Agency (ESA) reports its industrial partner renowned architects Foster + Partners have joined with ESA to test the feasibility of 3D printing using lunar soil.

February

Breakthrough: Scientists use 3D printer to produce stem cells -- A team of researchers from Scotland has used a novel 3D printing technique to arrange human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) for the very first time.

Urbee 2: The world's first 3D printed car ready for production -- Kor and his company announced that they were starting producing Urbee 2. The first 3D printed car Urbee 1 was just the "skin". The Urbee 2 they are working on will contain interior, all internal parts.

President Obama called 3D Printing: "the potential to revolutionize" in State of the Union Address -- In this year's State of the Union Address, President Barack Obama called 3D Printing a technology that has "the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything".

3D printing pen launches on Kickstarter, 100% funded in just some hours - Peter Dilworth and Max Bogue of WobbleWorks LLC introduce world's first 3D drawing pen 3Doodler on Kickstarter.

Scientists create lifelike ears with 3D printing -- Cornell University researchers have engineered artificial human ears that look and act like the real thing using a 3D printer.

Nike debuts world's first football cleat built using 3D printing -- Nike introduces new Nike Vapor Laser Talon, the first football cleat to use 3D printing technology.

4D Printing: transform shapes with multi-Material 3D printing -- Skylar Tibbits, an architect, designer and computer scientist presented a new concept at TED 2013: 4D printing.

March


3D printing brings customized, low-cost polymer implants to patients -- Using a patient's actual anatomical dimensions reseachers could draw up CAD files and 3D print out customized implantable devices.

83-year-old inventor wins $40,000 award for his DIY filament extruder - On March 2, 2013 Zach Kaplan, CEO of Inventables, presents a $40,000 check to inventor and competition winner Hugh Lyman for his DIY filament extruder.

Dutch architects to build the first 3D printed canal house -- Dutch studio, DUS Architects, is planning to build the first 3D-printed canal house in Amsterdam.

5 ways a 3D printer will save your life

Singapore to invest $500 million in 3D printing -- Singapore Government will invest $500 million over five years to boost country's skills in advanced manufacturing.

April


Breakthrough: 3D printer creates artificial human tissue - Oxford University scientists have developed a custom-built programmable 3D printer that can create materials with several of the properties of living tissues.

New 3D scanner creates high-resolution 3D images from a kilometer away -- The research team, led by Gerald Buller, describes a ToF imaging system that can gather high-resolution, 3-D information about objects that are typically very difficult to image, from up to a kilometer away.

Exploring 7 materials with 3D printing

3D Printing in Libraries Around the World -- Since late 2011, when the Fayetteville Public Library received widespread media attention for its hackerspace, 3D printers slowly began appearing in libraries around the world, particularly in the United States.

American Graphite to develop 3D printing material -- American Graphite Technologies Inc. announces Letter of Intent with a European institute for research and develpoment collaboration for 3D printing.

Staples opens first 3D Experience Centre in Netherlands -- Staples, the office chain megastore has opened its first 3D Experience Centre in the Netherlands.

Chinese government announces $6.5M for 3D printing research -- The Chinese government is to offer $6.5M for research aimed at developing technologies for additive manufacturing.

GE to mass-produce critical jet engine part use 3D printing -- GE's aviation division, the world's largest supplier of jet engines, is to use 3D printing technology to produce a fuel nozzle for use in jet engines.

May

3D printed bionic ear can hear radio frequencies -- Scientists at Princeton University used off-the-shelf printing tools to create a functional ear that can "hear" radio frequencies far beyond the range of normal human capability.

The Smithsonian is 3D-scanning the past for future generations -- What can you do to bring some of the Smithsonian's 137 million objects to life? The Smithsonian decided to use laser arm scanners to preserve its collection.

NASA grant $125K to fund 3D food printer -- Systems & Materials Research Corporation (SMRC), received a six month, $125,000 grant from NASA to further develop a fully functional 3D food printer.

Baby's life saved with groundbreaking bioresorbable splint made by 3D printer -- A baby's life has been saved by using a device to restore his breathing created by a 3D printer.

3D printer headed to Space Station in August 2014 -- NASA is planning to send a 3D printer to the International Space Station (ISS) in August 2014. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala is working with Made In Space.

Scientists create carbonized micro-bunny sculpture showing promises of new 3D printing material -- A team of Japanese scientists created a tiny rabbit sculpture, the size of a typical bacterium, using a new 3D printing material, a new type of resin which can be molded into complex, highly conductive 3D structures.

China shows off world largest 3D printed titanium fighter component -- At the 16th China International High-tech Expo AVIC Laser showed off the world's largest titanium aircraft critical component produced using 3D Laser Direct Manufacturing technology.

June


University of Eastern Finland and LUXeXceL Partner to Develop Photonics 3D Printing -- The Institute of Photonics at the University of Eastern Finland is launching cooperation with Dutch company LUXeXceL that offers rapid prototyping of optical components for prototypes and short-run batches.

UK government announces £14.7m investment for 3D printing projects -- UK businesses are set to benefit from a £14.7 million investment to develop 3D printing projects, Business Secretary Vince Cable announced on Jun.6.

China develops world's largest laser 3D printer -- Dalian University of Technology and Unit Science and Technology Development Co. Ltd. in China have developed a laser 3D printer with the maximum processing size of 1.8 m.

MIT researchers 3D printing artificial bone -- Using computer-optimized designs of soft and stiff polymers and 3D printer, researchers have created artificial bone, a composite that is 22 times more fracture-resistant than its strongest constituent material.

Microsoft adds 3D printing support to Windows 8.1, 3D printers soon in MS stores -- Microsoft is adding in native 3D printer support to Windows 8.1. That means you can 3D print an item directly from third-party applications by click "print".

An entirely 3D printed room with crazy patterns and 80 million surfaces -- Architect Benjamin Dillenburger and Michael Hansmeyer unveiled a 1:3 scale prototype of the room at the Materializing Exhibition in Tokyo and Swiss Art Awards 2013 in Basel, Switzerland.

US researchers develop 3D printed tiny lithium batteries -- A team based at Harvard University and the University of Illinois at Urbana have successfully created lithium-ion microbatteries the size of a grain of sand using 3D printing technology.

Stratasys acquiring MakerBot for $403 million in stock -- Stratasys, an Israeli-based 3D printer manufacturer has unveiled plans to acquire 3D printing company MakerBot in a stock-for-stock transaction valued at $403 million.

3D printing helps save duck Buttercup's life -- Buttercup is a duck hatched in a high school biology lab, with a backwards left foot. His Dad Mike Garey is working on making him a new foot using the latest technology in 3D modeling and printing.

July


3D printers may soon be in every home -- After conducting a lifecycle economic analysis on 3D printing in an average American household, Professor Pearce concluded the typical family can already save a great deal of money by making things with a 3D printer instead of buying them off the shelf.

MIT Develops New Ways to Streamline, Simplify 3D Printing -- A team of researchers from the MIT developed OpenFab, a programmable "pipeline" architecture that allows for the production of complex structures with varying material properties.

UK kids to be taught 3D printing and robotics from age of 5 -- The new curriculum in UK will give pupils the skills to design and make their own products using cutting-edge equipment, including 3D printers, laser cutters and robotics.

NZ programmer building impressive 3D-printed Aston Martin -- Ivan Sentch of Auckland, New Zealand is making his own Aston Martin DB4 using a Solidoodle 2 3D printer.

August


NASA: 3D printed rocket engine component generated a record thrust -- NASA revealed the largest 3D printed rocket engine component NASA has tested generated a record 20,000 pounds of thrust.

Japanese maker develops 3D printed tail-less ornithopter -- A recent work from Flapping Wing Production Studio (translated) is impressive - it is a 3D printed ornithopter that was assembled using 3D printed parts made on a desktop 3D printer.

Melbourne researchers develop 'grow your own' cartilage using 3D printing -- Melbourne researchers have found a technique to develop "grow your own" cartilage to treat cancers and replace damaged cartilage.

MIT: Airplanes and bridges can be assembled out of 3D-printed Lego-like blocks -- MIT researchers have developed a lightweight structure whose tiny blocks can be 3D printed and snapped together much like the Lego bricks.

Artists completes Echoviren, 'world's first 3D printed architectural structure' -- This large 3D printed sculpture the Echoviren was built by Smith|Allen Studio on Series 1 3D printers from Type a Machines.

September


UK company TTP unveils multi-material 3D printing breakthrough -- Cambridge-based, the Queen's Award winning technology and product development company TTP has announced its ground breaking Vista 3D, a new 3D print head that is capable of printing with more than one material.

Staples starts 3D printing service online -- Office supply chain Staples officially opened its 3D printing service in the Netherlands on Monday (Sep.16). Users can upload their 3D designs, get them 3D printed at Staples using full color Iris 3D printers from MCOR Technologies.

Disney researchers develop software to let you create and 3D print mechanical toys -- Research teams at Disney Research have created a pair of software packages that allow non-expert users to create animated mechanical characters.

Peachy Printer - The world's first $100 3D Printer -- Unlike most low cost 3D printers on the market which focus on using cheap component but similiar 3D printer design, Saskatchewan, Canada based Rylan Grayson invented his own: the Peachy Printer, the world's first $100 3D printer.

Aussie scientists create first detailed 3D scan of the Tower of Pisa -- A team of Australian researchers have created the most detailed interior 3D map of Italy's iconic Leaning Tower of Pisa by using a breakthrough handheld scanner.

Rembrandt prints in 3D: for research on painting process -- Scientists at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands have created some lifelike reproduction of paintings by Rembrandt and Vincent van Gogh in full color using 3D printing for research.

October

UK grants £500K funds to bring 3D printers to 60 schools -- Secretary Michael Gove revealed that a £500,000 fund was now being established to enable up to 60 teaching schools can buy 3D printers and train teachers to use them effectively.

HP to enter 3D printing market in mid-2014 -- HP is working on developing 3D printing technology, announced HP CEO Meg Whitman at the Canalys Channels Forum in Bangkok. HP plans to enter the 3D printer market in the middle of 2014, said Whitman.

Vitamin boost for 3D printing of medical implants -- Researchers from North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Laser Zentrum Hannover have discovered that a naturally-occurring compound can be incorporated into 3D printing processes to create medical implants out of non-toxic polymers.

First 3D printers arrive to Haiti -- Partnered with KIDmob, iLab // Haiti is teaching local Haitians 3D modeling skills and how the 3D printer works, how to repair it if it breaks down.

Microsoft new technology turns every smartphone into a 3D scanner -- During Innovation Day 2013 at Microsoft Research Asia on Oct. 30, researchers demonstrated how to create 3D images using a mobile phone.

November


Researchers developing gelatin bio-ink to 3D print human tissues and organs -- German researchers have developed a new gelatin bio-ink that can be used by 3D printing technology to produce artificial tissues.

World's first 3D printed metal gun -- 3D printing company Solid Concepts announced it has manufactured the world's first 3D Printed Metal Gun using a laser sintering process and powdered metals.

Tiny 3D-printed human liver can survive for up to 40 Days -- San Diego medical research company Organovo announced it has created slices of functioning, long-lasting human liver which can survive for 40 days - using a 3D printer.

New generation of fabric: World's first 3D-printed disposable panties -- 3D printing technology could revolutionize the textile industry. The world's first 3D printed disposable panties, the brain-child of an Israeli couple, could soon come to market as early as next year.

Mini Metal Maker to bring 3D metal printing to the masses -- Hartkop built the first-ever Mini Metal Maker, a 3D printer that prints 3D objects from digital files directly in precious metal clay, rather than in plastic.

3D printer could make 150 prosthetic eyes in an hour -- In collaboration with Manchester Metropolitan University, Fripp Design has developed 3D-printed prosthetic eyes that could be produced much cheaper and faster than existing handmade versions.

UK Researchers developing natural-looking, 3D-printed skin -- Researchers at the University of Liverpool are developing synthetic skin that can be produced on a 3D printer and matched to a person based on their age, gender and ethnic group.

Harvard shows important progress toward 3D printing lithium-ion batteries -- Harvard scientists first introduced 3D printing batteries back in June. The team created lithium-ion microbatteries the size of a grain of sand using 3D printing technology.

December

First working 3D printed liver expected by 2014 -- Organovo, a bio-printing company based in San Diego, has claimed that it has overcome the vascular issue to a degree and now expects to unveil the world's first printed organ - a human liver - by the end of 2014.

Foodini 3D Food Printer will look and operate just like a common kitchen appliance -- Barcelona start-up Natural Machines's Foodini, a prototype 3D printer can produce a range of foodstuffs, chocolate, cheeseburger, gnocchi, ravioli, bread sticks... as long as they are squidgy.

Scientists develop new app to turn mobile phones into 3D scanners -- The Computer vision and geometry Lab of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETHZ) developed an app that turns your normal smartphone into a mobile 3D scanner.

Scientists build a $1,500 open-source 3D metal printer -- A team at Michigan Technological University is developing a new open-source, low-cost metal 3D printer that will allow anyone to make his or her own replacement parts.

3D printing BioPen allows doctors to 'draw' customised implants -- A handheld 'bio pen' developed in the labs of the University of Wollongong (UOW) will allow surgeons to repair damaged and diseased bone material by designing customised implants on-site and at the time of surgery.


Self-repairing running shoes made from 3D-printed protocells -- London designer and researcher Shamees Aden has developed a prototype for running shoes that could repair themselves overnight. Called Protocells Trainers, Aden's shoes are made of protocells and 3D printed to the exact size of the user's foot.


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