Apple now has have an approved patent for a color 3D Printer, making Apple’s entrance to the market likely. What’s more, they are showing interest in color printing systems.
The name of the patent is “Method and apparatus for three-dimensional printing of colored objects”. The illustration of the printer itself shows what one would expect of an FFF printer but with a color nozzle as well. The patent also includes a number of ways that the color printer could operate.
One of these ways was illustrated a flowchart that shows that the machine would add colors after the printing the object. It uses a “non-transitory program storage device” that reads the object file, automatically applies colors and sends it to the printer. Another version has an active color nozzle working alongside the print process. A third proposal outlines a “computer-implemented method of printing a custom manufactured object”. There are very few details on how this method works.
Will Apple take on the HP’s of the world?
You will see names you recognize, such as Autodesk, GE Ventures, 3D Systems, & Stratasys. But you will also see some new names, or names you didn’t think of, such as: Lowe’s BMW, and Seimens. See the diagram of 3D Printing Ventures
The experts weigh in and point to these 5 trends:
New and Improved Metal 3D Printing
Polymers and Other 3D Printing Materials
Increased Speed and Productivity
From a 3D printing perspective, the are positive.
In particular, a slew of new metal 3D printing technologies were unveiled, including the Metal X 3D printer from Markforged, two new processes from Desktop Metal, a cheaper metal 3D printer from Xact Metal and a faster metal 3D printer from SPEE3D.
Formlabs introduced a desktop selective laser sintering (SLS) system, while Carbon introduced a new 3D printer and part-washing package. 3D Systems’ new CEO began implementing his vision for the company, while HP saw its Multi Jet Fusion make its way into the marketplace.
We also can’t forget the impact that GE Additive has had on the industry.
However, my own personal bias that none of the roundtable experts mentioned is the increased use of 3D scanning. More and more handled scanners will hit the market, but they will occur in terms of software. Software that will be used with your smart phone.
One of the main complaints about 3D Printing technology has been speed. Enter a new technology which uses laser generated hologram images to speed the process up quickly. There are some big research names behind this: Lawrence Livermore National Lab, along with collaborators at UC Berkeley, the University of Rochester, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). They claim this is the next biggest breakthrough in the 3D Printing industry.
To see more on the subject click here for this 3D Printing Video.
According to the abstract on Science Mag:
“Despite recent advances to control the spatial composition and dynamic functionalities of bacteria embedded in materials, bacterial localization into complex three-dimensional (3D) geometries remains a major challenge. We demonstrate a 3D printing approach to create bacteria-derived functional materials by combining the natural diverse metabolism of bacteria with the shape design freedom of additive manufacturing. To achieve this, we embedded bacteria in a biocompatible and functionalized 3D printing ink and printed two types of “living materials” capable of degrading pollutants and of producing medically relevant bacterial cellulose. With this versatile bacteria-printing platform, complex materials displaying spatially specific compositions, geometry, and properties not accessed by standard technologies can be assembled from bottom up for new biotechnological and biomedical applications.”
What this means is a) Size of print b) the use of living materials!
Read the full article here
The 3D printing landscape involves copyright, IP, and trademark considerations, making it a big mess for legal practitioners to try and understand. Quite frankly, copyright regulations simply haven’t caught up to this new technology. Rarely do they ever. It takes a lot for laws to catch up U.S. law provides that copyright protection exists in “original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.”
But is ownership so easily identifiable when it comes to 3D printing? Every person involved has had a hand in some critical essential aspect of the work, so it’s often hard to determine if any one participant in particular holds the undisputable copyright in the product. What’s likely to happen is that the law will register copyright to joint authors, meaning multiple people will hold copyright title to the work.
If you’re a designer or printer involved with a particular design, it’s important to copyright your work for your own protection. Reaching an agreement with the other parties involved should be relatively easy if you’re in on it together – but what happens when you upload your design to the internet, and a printer unknowingly downloads, prints, and start selling your work?
The toy industry has the potential become one of the largest beneficiaries of 3D printing, with the industry projected to be worth $135 billion by 2020. 3D print users stand to etch out a significant piece of this market, as toys are commonly ideal shapes and sizes for 3D print manufacturing and are typically made from common 3D print materials that include plastics, carbon fibers, and ceramics. This allows for the development of replacement parts, missing accessories and new features via 3D printers.
The toy industry has increasingly realized the potential for allowing users to create their own toys and parts. In 2017, Mattel plans to release ‘ThingMaker,’ a 3D printer geared towards children that pairs with an accompanying software application and allows users to print a range of toys that includes jewelry and figurines. Simiarly, XYZprinting offers the ‘da Vinci miniMaker,’ which allows users to print smaller items of varying shapes….as they’re seen as a way for children to use their creativity and imagination while building a foundation to learn technology and engineering skills.
Toys R Us once was the dominant player, with 1600 stores. Yet, they filed from bankruptcy. Is this another case of a firm ignoring the 3D Printing trend, just as magazines ignored the internet? In this 3D Printing book, I talk about how 3D Printing is here, and firms better pay attention.
In Denver, Colorado on November 17, 2017, Bill Decker will speak to a group of entrepreneurs. The title of his roundtable discussion will be “3D Printing, An Entrepreneur’s Best Friend.” His session is at 3:15 pm. However, the summit is all day long and features many speakers and breakout sessions.
The purpose of the intergenerational summit to to show entrepreneurs, mentors, and financiers the effectiveness of different generations working together on start ups/ When you combine generations, you can achieve greater results more quickly.
For more on the summit, how to register and the conference promoters, Click Here
What weighs around 1,650 pounds and is about as long as a large sport utility vehicle? It’s the world’s “largest solid 3-D printed item,” created by Boeing and one of its research partners – and certified by GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS.
The record-setting object — which measures 17.5 feet long, 5.5 feet wide and 1.5 feet tall – is a wing trim and drill tool that Boeing will use to build its forthcoming 777X airplane. And it represents Boeing’s latest achievement in 3-D printing, also known as additive manufacturing.
The creation of this item “is just an example of what we can do with additive manufacturing,” said Leo Christodoulou, Materials & Manufacturing chief engineer at Boeing. Another way that 3D Printing is making huge developments in Aerospace.
“Additively manufactured tools will save energy, time, labor and production cost and are part of our overall strategy to apply 3-D printing technology in key production areas,” Christodoulou said.
The making of this tool exemplifies the tremendous efficiencies that 3-D printing can generate.
Read the full article here on Boeing’s website
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