Nov 27, 2017 | By David

Here’s another round-up of the latest developments in the 3D printing world, in case you missed anything recently. Stories include Nike making 3D printed cleats for the NFL, Nano Dimension getting a new chairman, and more besides.

1. Nike developing 3D printed cleats for NFL

Sporting goods giant Nike has been making use of 3D printing technology to change the way that it creates footwear for professional athletes, and NFL players should be the latest to benefit from its pioneering work. After already 3D printing some advanced customized track spikes for Olympic gold medallist Allyson Felix, Nike will now be working with HP’s 3D printing division in order to develop a process for NFL teams to create new cleats.

3D printing enables the new cleats to be specifically tailored to an individual athlete’s requirements, in terms of their foot shape, gait and other aspects. It also drastically decreases the amount of time it takes for a cleat to be made, from prototyping and testing to final production, and it cuts costs at every stage.

Last year we saw Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis playing in Super Bowl 50 with a broken arm, making use of a 3D-printed sleeve in order to protect it from further stress or damage.


2. Avi Reichental to Lead Nano Dimension as Co-Chairman

Nano Dimension, one of the industry leaders in 3D printed electronics, has announced the hiring of a new staff member at the highest level, in order to help the company expand its reach even further. Pending approval from shareholders, additive manufacturing pioneer Avi Reichental is due to join the company after accepting the board of directors' invitation to lead as co-chairman together with its current chairman, Mr. Itzhak Shrem.

Reichental served as president, CEO and director at 3D Systems for more than a decade, during which time the company had great success and gained a major reputation as one of the leading figures contributing to the 3D printing industry’s boom. Currently a partner at OurCrowd First, Israel's most active early-stage venture fund, he is also the founder, chairman, and CEO of XponentialWorks, a venture investment and advisory firm focusing on early and mature stage companies in connected mobility, 3D printing, robotics and deep-learning.

According to Shrem, ‘‘As we firmly transition into full commercial activities with first customer orders for our DragonFly 2020 Pro, I am confident that Avi's deep industry knowledge and extensive leadership experience, will enhance our strategic direction, strengthen our go-to-market plans and bolster our purpose to disrupt and reshape how electronics are designed and made."


3. Metal 3D printing company Apworks partners with Toyal

A major new strategic partnership was announced at this year’s Formnext 2017 trade show, between APWORKS and TOYAL. They have announced their cooperation in the further development, production and distribution of the patented high-strength aluminium alloy Scalmalloy. This unique material, which has a comparable strength to titanium, was developed as one of the first materials exclusively for 3D metallic printing.

Apworks is a division of Airbus, and it has been successfully supplying industrial manufacturing clients with its advanced 3D printing technology and materials from its base in Munich since 2013. Scalmalloy has been one of its major success stories, with its unique properties. Toyal is a metals company with decades of experience, having been established back in 2013. The new partnership should see significant value added to the Scalmalloy brand, as Toyal will optimize its production process and increase its distribution network through incorporation in its existing portfolio of materials.


4. 3D printing expert Materialise partners with Siemens Healthineers

A new partnership has been established between 3D printing giant Materialise and medical technology Siemens Healthineers. They will be joining forces in order to bring Materialise Mimics inPrint software to hospitals around the world. The partnership was announced at the 2017 Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) Annual Meeting, and it makes Materialise Mimics InPrint software, a dedicated solution for printing anatomical models in hospitals, available to radiologists through the Siemens Healthineers syngo.via open app platform.

3D technology enables better planning between surgical teams and radiologists for operations, as well as improved communication with patients and better training and education. Materialise’s medical divison is rapidly becoming one of the main suppliers of these pioneering new approaches to hospital workflows worldwide.

“By incorporating 3D technology into syngo.via, we jointly support the entire workflow from patient diagnosis to therapy planning,” said Valentin Ziebandt, Head of Marketing at the Syngo Business Line at Siemens Healthineers. “This is a cost-effective way to increase the clinical capabilities of syngo.via and an important step towards achieving personalized care and precision medicine.”


5. Zip company YKK invests in 3D printer

Fastener manufacturing giant YKK Europe Ltd has made the decision to invest in a Stratasys Objet 350 Connex3 3D printer, in order to speed up its prototyping capabilities and allowing it to bring goods into the marketplace faster. The technology was supplied by Stratasys UK platinum partner SYS Systems.

The Connex 3 has the ability to print in 16-micron (0.0006-inch) layers, as well as incorporating different colours and highly durable materials in the same build, giving unrivalled design freedom for models as close to the final product as it is possible to be. It uses PolyJet technology to produce die block inserts for YKK’s injection mould tools in just one to two hours. This process previously took a week or more in the company’s busy machine shop, so the new 3D printing system should lead to a huge decrease in costs in terms of labour hours as well as an improved turnaround of products.

According to Mark Davies, from YKK’s Product and Machinery Development team, said: “Today, the world’s textile and sewing product industries are seeing ever greater diversification in consumer needs and shorter product cycles...We picked PolyJet technology due to the potential to have up to 100 materials, including blends and colours, available on the tray at any one time. In combination with high resolution, we knew this would more than cover our requirements for the foreseeable future...During prototyping we don’t have to machine four or five inserts out of metal as we work through various iterations. We can simply make our design modifications and start another 3D print... The capability of the machine is ideal for our requirements and has proven to be an irreplaceable part of the R&D process.”

6. Philips teams with 3D printing industry leaders 3D Systems and Stratasys

Royal Philips today announced agreements with 3D Systems and Stratasys to help progress patient care and improve the clinician experience. The agreements include virtually seamless interfacing and dedicated workflows across Philips IntelliSpace Portal 10 and 3D Systems / Stratasys services. Philips customers will now have a virtually seamless connection to 3D Systems and Stratasys solutions to expedite 3D printing to rapidly design, order, and produce 3D printed anatomical structures on-demand. Users can create the model in IntelliSpace Portal 10, save the data and easily transfer the data to the 3D vendors' solutions without leaving the clinical environment.

Built directly from patient scans, these realistic anatomical creations are 3D printed in full color and in a range of textures – from hard bone to soft tissue. The resulting models allow physicians to plan, practice and determine therapy approaches. Each prototype is designed to help advance surgical techniques and allow for training and testing in zero-risk environments.

Stratasys 3D Printed medical model built with PolyJet technology

3D Systems' Patient-specific anatomical model

"Enhancing how we visualize anatomy and diseases, like cancerous tumors, can profoundly affect the level of personalized care we can deliver to patients," said Yair Briman, Business Leader Healthcare Informatics at Philips. "By improving 3D printing capabilities by working with 3D Systems and Stratasys, we aim to empower providers to improve care for complex cases and increase diagnostic confidence."



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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