May 2, 2017 | By David

There were several 3D printing developments that may have passed you by this week, including a technological partnership between Russia and Germany, and a rebranding for Swedish manufacturer Arcam. Here's a roundup of these and other stories:

1. Rebranding for Swedish 3D printing company Arcam

Based in Molndal, Sweden, Arcam AB provides a range of metal 3D printing solutions to the manufacturing industry, but its worldwide operations have, to date, been carried out under different names. Arcam EBM in Canada provides electron beam melting 3D printing machinery, Arcam AP&C in Sweden sells metal powders for use in 3D printing, and Arcam DTI in the U.S is a provider of contract manufacturing. As of May 1 the company will be operating under a new branding identity, with its three businesses being unified under the Arcam Group banner.

According to CEO Magnus Rene, ‘'Arcam and the industry have evolved considerably since our original brand more than 20 years ago. Bringing together our offerings... will make it easier for us to efficiently address the market.’’ Arcam AB will also now be endorsed as part of manufacturing giant GE Additive.

2. CGTech to demonstrate VERICUT 3D printing simulation software at TCT show

CGTech’s latest version of its VERICUT software will be on display at this years rapid + TCT trade fair, which is being held in Pittsburgh, May 9-11. VERICUT is a software solution for virtual simulation of 3D printing additive manufacturing processes. It allows manufacturers to analyze their methods and optimize them accordingly, enabling more accurate laser cladding and material deposition, as well as detecting collisions between the machine and additive part and finding errors, voids, and misplaced material.

VERICUT 8.1 will add the option to simulate integration of different additive methods. Users will be able to virtually experiment with combining 3D printing techniques to find the best hybrid solution for every stage of the manufacturing process. Gene Granata, VERICUT Product Manager, says that this will give customers a competitive edge: “VERICUT’s realistic simulation of the entire hybrid process enables customers to verify the part will be built correctly, without causing damage to the part, machine, or expensive laser equipment.”

3. Russia and Germany co-operate to support new technologies including 3D printed prosthetics

Yuri Stetsenko, the trade representative for Russia in Germany, has announced the potential establishment of a deliberate technological co-operation between the two countries. This will represent a significant improvement in trade relations, which have diminished since the sanctions imposed on Russia in 2014.  Before this, however, Germany was a key trade partner for Russia and could be returning to this position in the near future.

The international laser center in Hamburg and the Russian supercomputer in Juelich have already been the focus of several major joint technological projects, and the upcoming years could see these kinds of collaborations on a much more regular basis. Russia is willing to share the advances it has made in cancer diagnosis and treatment with the German medical industry, and in exchange the country could soon be taking advantage of German breakthroughs in 3D printed prosthetic technology. According to Stetsenko, ''The Germans need us, our 'brains' and raw materials, and we need their technologies, the organization of labor and money. And, of course, we need a German market, and they need ours."

4. Limited edition 3D printed fidget spinners available from AirWolf 3D

Fidget spinners are taking the place of worry stones and stress balls as the latest hand-occupying craze, as people in classrooms, lecture halls, and boardrooms are using them to deal with anxiety or restlessness. They are particularly useful as therapeutical tools for people diagnosed with ADHD, helping them to focus on tasks. CHADD is a non-profit organization that provides education, advocacy and support for individuals diagnosed with the disorder, and a sale of limited edition spinners over at AirWolf3D has just been launched to raise funds for the charity.

Each of the four 3D printed spinners is based on an original design by a child, with the first being named ‘The Zoe’ after its 11 year-old creator. Only 30 of each design will be produced, so buyers will be receiving an incredibly rare item at the same time as contributing to a good cause. Check out the offer at AirWolf3D’ s 3D printing site

5. North Carolina Medical Center using LulzBot Taz 6 3D printer to help with radiation treatment

Oncology doctors at the NCMC have been taking advantage of 3D printing technology to improve their radiation treatment of cancer patients. A 3D printed mold or bolus can be applied to the patient’s body, allowing for better targeted radiation doses and vastly improving the effectiveness of treatment. Before making use of 3D printing, less precise methods involving gauze and tape were used.

The 3D printed bolus is based on a CAT scan which is then converted into a 3D model. Skin cancer patients have benefitted from this technique, and there are plans to extend the use of 3D printing technology to other cancer treatments.

The NCMC was given a LulzBot TAZ 6 3D printer by Loveland-based manufacturer Aleph Objects, Inc and took several months to get to grips with the technology before it went live. The new 3D printing program will soon be rolled out in other locations, such as Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert, Ariz., and the McKee Medical Center in Loveland, Colo. According to Aleph Objects President Harris Kenny, "Providing highly personalized care from a doctor's desktop is an exciting example of what is possible with 3D printing in healthcare and other fields."

6. EOS joins 3MF Consortium as founding member

The 3MF Consortium, an industry association created to develop and promote a new full-fidelity file format for 3D printing, today announced that EOS, a global technology leader in industrial 3D printing, has joined at the Founding membership level. EOS is a pioneer in the field of Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) and a provider of a leading polymer technology.

"EOS Additive Manufacturing (AM) solutions allow manufacturers to shift from traditional tool-based, static manufacturing techniques to generative, flexible, more efficient industrial 3D printing methods," said Martin Steuer, Business Development Manager at EOS. "The 3MF 3D file format plays an important role in AM by helping to improve the efficiency and productivity of AM solutions while eliminating the issues found with older file formats.”

Founding members of the 3MF Consortium include 3D Systems; Autodesk, Inc.; Dassault Systèmes, SA.; EOS; FIT AG; GE Global Research; HP, Inc.; Materialise; Microsoft Corporation; Shapeways, Inc.; Siemens PLM Software; SLM Solutions Group AG; Stratasys; and Ultimaker.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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