Nov 15, 2017 | By David

3D printing news is coming thick and fast these days, and we can’t expect you to always stay ahead of the curve. So here’s another quick round-up of stories you might have missed, including an award for a 3D printed sleep apnea mask, a new filament drying solution from Mass Portal, and more besides.

1.Mass Portal launches new professional grade 3D printing filament drying solution

3D printer manufacturer Mass Portal, based in Latvia, is launching a new line of products specially designed for the open-materials 3D printing industry. The range of professional grade filament dryers is demonstrated at this year’s Formnext trade show, and it is the first dryer aimed at this specific corner of the market.

Filament dryers are a standard piece of equipment used in most polymer-based 3D printing processes, capable of removing moisture from the material as it is extruded. Excessive moisture can negatively affect the melt stability of polymers and this leads to lower print quality in terms of aesthetic and mechanical properties, so it’s an important aspect to manage. Many open-material desktop 3D printing systems, however, do not take it into account.

Mass Portal filament dryers will be compatible with most open material 3D printers, and the majority of spool sizes. They feature rotary desiccant disk dehumidification system, a simple and intuitive interface, preset drying settings for most common filaments, replaceable HEPA/active carbon filters, and built-in overheating and overcurrent protections.


2. CES 2018 Innovation award given to 3D printed sleep apnea mask

Los Angeles-based medical device manufacturer Metamason has been named an CES 2018 Innovation Awards Honoree for one of its products, the Miia. The Miia is a nasal CPAP mask, produced using 3D printing technology.

This is the world’s first customized-fit respiratory mask for the treatment of sleep related breathing disorders, such as Sleep Apnea. Metamason’s pioneering method makes use of its own proprietary software to convert 3D scans of each patient’s face into a physical device. Previous devices intended to treat sleep apnea tend to have a range of comfort and leakage issues due to an imprecise fit, and this leads around 50 percent of the almost 30 million U.S patients undergoing CPAP therapy to eventually abandon it.

According to Ryan Oenning, Chief Product Officer at Metamason, “This acknowledgement signifies that a tide is turning towards personalized medicine by exemplifying a new relationship between the patient and the device. Our software and manufacturing methods will help move the industry beyond simple prototypes towards truly scalable and competitive methods.’’

The CES Innovation Awards are relatively prestigious in the consumer technoloy field, and are sponsored by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA). They have been recognizeing achievements in product design and engineering since 1976.


3. EOS to showcase latest versions of 3D printing software solutions

At this year’s Formnext trade show in Frankfurt, 3D printing leader EOS is demonstrating its newest advances in software solutions to manage the industrial 3D printing process. EOSPRINT 2 has a host of impressive new features, and the company is also introducing two new products, EOSTATE and EOSCONNECT.

Job and process management software EOSPRINT 2, which is optimized for EOS products, now has a bundle of new features that should enhance productivity. With  Z-segmentation and unique exposure patterns, EOSPRINT 2 adds to the integration of AM into serial production, and customers integrating AM and post-process machining can profit from the reference point calibration feature. This feature is essential to set the same zero point across different machine types, such as milling and turning machines and industrial 3D printing. EOSPRINT also offers expert functionalities for material and process development with its DoE (Design of Experiments) set-up feature.

The new Process Monitoring Suite EOSTATE is an automated and intelligent multi-monitoring suite that enables customers to conduct real-time quality assurance of all their production processes. It is composed of four different monitoring tools: System, PowderBed, MeltPool and Exposure OT. These make use of thermal sensors, cameras and other technology to measure, monitor and map the 3D printing process in detail, in real-time, in order to optimize printing and advance research.

EOSCONNECT is an industrial-grade connectivity solution. It allows machine and production data to be gathered and made available in near real-time, as well as an intuitive app to visualize the data in a dashboard. This solution should be the next step towards a comprehensive and user-friendly machine park surveillance. Increased transparency and secure traceability will help more companies to validate their processes for production and improve productivity.


4. Nano Dimension gets patent for new 3D printer head maintenance system

3D printed electronics pioneer Nano Dimension has announced the receipt of a patent for its innovative print head maintenance system. The company’s unique print-head cleaning system makes use of a special air suction process, which involves no direct contact on the print head. This groundbreaking maintenance system, which is one of the market’s leading cleaning solutions, prevents erosion of the print nozzles and enables longer lifespan of the print head.

The company, which is pioneering the use of innovative 3D printing techniques to produce customized PCBs for all kinds of electronic devices, has already received 3 patents before this latest one.


5. Arconic teams up with Airbus to advance 3D printing in aerospace

A major new research partnership has been established between aerospace giant Airbus and cutting-edge manufacturing provider Arconic. This collaboration follows the two companies’ previous arrangement, announced last year, which will see Arconic using laser-based 3D printing technology to produce titanium and nickel airframe components, such as fuselage and engine pylon components, for Airbus.

The new deal between the companies will lead to the development of customized processes and parameters to produce and qualify large, structural 3D printed components, such as pylon spars and rib structures, up to approximately 1 meter (3 feet) in length. This combines Arconic’s established metal 3D printing expertise with the aerospace design and qualification capabilities that Airbus can boast.

Arconic has advanced AM facilities in Cleveland, Ohio and at the Arconic Technology Center just outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Its groundbreaking Ampliforge process is one of the main reasons for its strong reputation in the manufacturing sector. This process treats a near complete 3D printed part using another advanced manufacturing process, such as forging, which enhances the properties of 3D printed parts. It can increase toughness, fatigue and strength when compared with parts made solely by additive manufacturing, and it also reduces material input and production lead times.



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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