Dec 29, 2015 | By Andre

For anyone following 3D printing in the last few years, it's evident that the technology is improving and expanding at a rapid pace. And while we’re still a long way from mimicking the fictional replicator in Star Trek, the increase of 3D printing facilities in and around academic institutions throughout the world shows a growing importance and the practical necessity of these labratories.

Israel's second oldest university, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, just announced the launch of The 3D and Functional Printing Center. This is a lab situated near the Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology that is dedicated to the research in 3D and functional printed parts using an array of different technologies. Whether you need inkjet printing, digital light processing, fused deposition modelling, powder printing or laser sintering to turn a project into reality, the facility has you covered.

Professor Shlomo Magdassi, the Center's director, has said of the lab that “The 3D and Functional Printing Center will be an interdisciplinary hub catering to researchers and students from across the university’s scientific disciplines. In addition to chemists and physicists who are already in the field, the Center will invite researchers from biology, medicine, agriculture and computer science to move into this sphere. By encouraging scientific collaborations between researchers from different disciplines, I expect we will see new breakthroughs based on their synergistic expertise.” The open nature of what a 3D printer is able to produce is evident with the wide range of disciplines highlighted here by Professor Magdassi.

A quick web search suggests he is the ideal candidate to lead the lab and all its future endeavours. In late 2014, he won the inaugural Untold News Award - along with a prize $10,000 - for inventing a bendable plastic touch screen display for smart phones that can be made with a commercial inkjet printer (reducing the number of manufacturing steps by 80%). He’s also heavily involved with transparent conductive electrodes, materials for 3D printing, inkjet inks formulations, coatings for inks for solar energy applications, nanoparticles for bio-imaging, drug delivery and the list goes on.

Additionally, the university already has innovations focused on 3D print technology under its belt. For example, Dip-Tech, the leading provider of digital ceramic glass printing technology got its start there; as did a rather novel latte art machine, the Ripple Maker, based on Professor Magdassi’s research.

It seems that with all of the qualified and experienced minds in place at the university, having the facility opening up now couldn’t have come at a better time. Professor Shlomo Magdassi sounds as if they’re going to hit the ground running by saying “we hope to break new ground in various disciplines and integrate 3D and functional printing into various industrial manufacturing processes, such as in printed electronics, food, medical implants, vehicles, security, and even architecture and the construction of buildings.

Israel has been a leader in 3D Printing technology for years (Objet, a subsidiary of Stratasys, has some of the most advanced printers available on the market today for example). The opening of The 3D and Functional Printing Center at the Hebrew University, along with similar labratories popping up around the globe pays further credence to the idea that not only is 3D printing here to stay, but that it is expanding its reach into more and more disciplines and fields every day.



Posted in 3D Printing Service



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