Optomec partners with LENS metal 3D printing distributor in China

Metal additive manufacturing specialist Optomec has entered
into a partnership with  HUSUN Technologies, a
distributor of industrial 3D printing solutions.

Under the terms of the partnership, HUSUN Technologies
will be promoting and selling Optomec’s LENS metal 3D printing
systems across China.

According to Pascal Pierra, Optomec Director of Asia
Pacific Sales, the partnership has already got off to a
positive start by securing the sale of two LENS systems, “We
are very happy to partner with HUSUN to expand sales of LENS
metal additive manufacturing systems in China,” he adds.

“The HUSUN team has an excellent track record delivering
advanced industrial manufacturing solutions including
equipment, application technology, and post-sales support.”

HUSUN's distribution of LENS 3D printers will start with the LENS 450 system. Image via OptomecHUSUN’s distribution
of LENS 3D printers will start with the LENS 450 system pictured
above. Image via Optomec

Laser Engineered Net Shaping

Optomec’s Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS) technology is a
Directed Energy Deposition (DED) additive manufacturing
technology for metal. It is available as both a hybrid upgrade
for CNC machines, or turnkey systems, which are to be sold by

One of the advantages of the LENS process is that is can 3D
print metals directly onto pre-fabricated components, making it
an ideal tool for
machine repair

The repaired gear with news LENS 3D printed and machined gears highlighted. Photo via RITA gear repaired using
LENS technology at Rochester Institute of Technology. Photo via

Asia-Pacific business

In the Asia-Pacific region, Optomec has an existing
LENS 3D printer reselling partnership
with Taiyo
Nippon Sanso Corporation, one of the largest gas suppliers
in the world, and Tongtai Machine & Tool Co. in Taiwan
integrated the LENS Print Engine
into a new line of
hybrid additive manufacturing machines.

The Tongtai factory in Taiwan. Photo by Michael Petch.The Tongtai factory in
Taiwan. Photo by Michael Petch.

Commenting on the new partnership, Ms. Qiao, General
Manager of Husun Technologies, said, “We see a large market
opportunity for metal additive manufacturing technology in the
region and are expanding our sales and sales service teams to
promote and support LENS technology to various application
fields in China,”

“Optomec is an internationally famous company in the field of
metal additive manufacturing and we are pleased to partner
with them in their global development strategy.”

HUSUN Technologies full industrial 3D printing portfolio
includes a range of metal and polymer systems from EOS.

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Featured image shows LENS metal 3D printing in action.
Image via Optomec.

Manufacturing Technologies Association launches 2018 Technology Design and Innovation Challenge

The UK’s Manufacturing Technologies
(MTA) has launched their annual
competition for D&T and engineering students. The 2018
Technology Design and Innovation (TDI) Challenge is sponsored
, a UK merchant banking group.

Based in London, the MTA is the UK’s trade association
for companies in the manufacturing technology sector.

The association’s flagship competition is one of the
leading extracurricular school’s competitions in the UK. Past
winners have used the TDI Challenge as launchpad for an
industry career and students can enter existing

Halimah Ershad of Forest School in London, won the 17-19
age category 2017 TDI Challenge and went on to receive an
undergraduate scholarship to the Dyson School of

Ershad’s project was a High End Chick Brooder called
BrooDen. Speaking at the time, Ershad said, “I can’t believe I
have won, it has been a great day and I have really enjoyed
myself. It was a brilliant experience seeing a modern
manufacturing facility like
Mazak. This is
a great first step for me to a career in engineering.”

The MTA 2018 Technology Design and Innovation Challenge.The MTA 2018 Technology
Design and Innovation Challenge.

Opportunities in engineering

Competitions like the TDI Challenge also serve a wider
function. Laura Pickering, Education and Development Manager at
the MTA, explained, “This year the TDI Challenge is even more
important, as we are in the Year of Engineering. We want to use
this opportunity to inspire the next generation of engineers,
and to help widen the diversity of employees within the
industry. Students from all backgrounds should be aware that
there are many rewarding and interesting careers in engineering
available to them, accessible via apprenticeships and
further/higher education.”

The Engineer
reports a recent survey
, an accountancy services provider.
The survey is among the latest data to show a decline in
applications for engineering apprenticeships. Derek Kelly, CEO
of Nixon Williams, said, “The UK is predicted to need
approximately 87,000 new engineers every year. UK universities
churn out around 50,000 engineering graduates per year, many of
whom do not remain in the country, so increasing the talent
pipeline through apprenticeships will be vital to meeting that

The MTA TDI Challenge is free to enter, with student
prizes including an iPad, GoPro, UE Boom Speaker and a drone.
Schools can win credits for D&T equipment from

Supplies Limited
ranging from £500 to

Addressing the skills gap

There is a long standing acknowledgement of a

skills gap in additive manufacturing
Global enterprises such as

and GE are expanding their 3D
printing footprint, which increases demand for people skilled
in 3D printing.

Steven Gee CEO, Industrial Equipment Division from DTI
Challenge sponsor Close Brothers Asset Finance said, “Now more
than ever, it is important to address the skills gap that many
businesses in the manufacturing technologies industry face. We
hope to help close this gap by supporting D&T and
Engineering in the curriculum and raising awareness nationwide
through the TDI challenge.”

In January 2018 the MTA highlighted
the importance of 3D printing in a letter to the British
Prime Minister
and stated, “Technological
change is the moving spirit of our age, whether it is the
development of AI pushing our understanding of consciousness,
3D printing altering how we can make things or digital
technology transforming how businesses interact with consumers,
we are seeing the future hurtle towards us.”

HM Government's 2018 Year of Engineering artwork. Image via YoEgovuk on TwitterHM Government’s 2018
Year of Engineering artwork. Image via YoEgovuk on Twitter

The closing date for entries is Friday
th May 2018. Finalists will be
notified by Friday 8
th June 2018. The
TDI Challenge is open to any student living in the United
Kingdom. More information about the
2018 MTA TDI Challenge is
available here

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3D printing news Sliced, NASA, Gucci, MSF and Oak Ridge National Laboratory

What connection does 3D printing have to a
19th Century German philosopher? How can 3D printing turn
virtual space-ships into a reality? How did 3D printing take
one Streamliner vehicle beyond 200mph?

This edition of 3D printing news Sliced
features stories from the Government of Hamburg, GoPrint3D,
Gravity Sketch, Nano Dimension, 
OMNI3D, LPW, Jugnoo, GEM
Print My
Oak Ridge National
Laboratory, Star Trek Online, Mixed
Bronco Combat Systems,
Create Cafe, Medecins
sans Frontières, 
Imeco, Iris van Herpen,
Phoenix Museum of Art, Gucci, 
Makinarium, Dubai Roads and
Transport Authority, BoingBoing, 
Anatoly Dneprov, Nanyang
Technological University, 
Whitireia, and WelTec.

3D printing on the politicians’

Senator Frank Horch, Minister for Economic
Affairs in Hamburg’s regional government has announced that a
€30 million ($37 million) investment will include the
establishment of a 3D printing network in Hamburg. Centred
around Germany’s Fraunhofer Institutes, the network will
promote and support adoption of the technology among local

At the network’s launch in Hamburg’s Chamber
of Commerce, Horch

‘Schopenhauer once said: ‘Everyone thinks
the limits of their own field of vision are those of the
world.’ We must overcome these boundaries…we want to clarify
what Industry 4.0 and 3D printing mean for our industrial
production…SMEs in particular stand to benefit from 3D

The UK Government Chief Whip in the House of
Commons, Julian Smith MP visited the GoPrint3D head office in
Ripon, North Yorkshire, meeting the company’s apprentices and
witnessing the latest 3D printing technologies in

Rt. Hon. Julian Smith MP at GoPrint3D. Photo via GoPrint3D.Rt. Hon. Julian Smith
MP at GoPrint3D. Photo via GoPrint3D.

3D printing moves to new continents

Following an agreement with South African
reseller EDA Technologies, Nano
‘s DragonFly Pro 2020 3D Printer will now
be available in Africa.

Poland-based 3D printer manufacturer OMNI3D has signed a deal with
reseller WL3D, part of the WorkLine Store brand, which opens up
OMNI3D machines to the Italian market.

“Italy is an important market for us. We have
a lot of inquiries from local Italian customers, so looking for
the reliable partner in that market was my priority in the past
quarter,” said Marek Starow, Export Manager at OMNI3D.

FITNIK, the 3D printing joint venture from
Germany’s FIT Additive
Group and Russian Research and Engineering
Company NIK Ltd., has officially commenced operations.
Initially set up in November 2017,

the strategic collaboration seeks to help increase adoption of
additive manufacturing across Russia.

3D printing funding, acquisitions and league

Gravity Sketch, a VR and
3D design software startup has raised $1.7m in a seed
fund round, following backing from London-based
VC Forward
, San Francisco’s Super Ventures, and Japan’s
Wacom. The cash will be used to develop the immersive design

Beamler, a 3D Printing software provider,
announced that it has acquired Printr, the producer of an ERP
system for desktop 3D printers. This cloud-based system allows
engineers to access different 3D printers at the same time from
any computer through the cloud. The two companies will now
integrate their respective products.

LPW Technology, a manufacturer of metal powders for additive
manufacturing has ranked in the UK’s top national export
league, the Sunday Times Lloyds SME Export Track 100, for the
second year running, following a 30% increase in worldwide
export sales over the past 12 months.

Controlled powder handling at LPW. Photo via LPW TechnologyControlled powder
handling at LPW. Photo via LPW Technology

New services and changes at the top

Fresh from announcing
successful Q2 financial reports
, metal 3D printing
materials firm Carpenter Technology Corporation is to make
a series of leadership changes in accordance with its
long-term succession plan.

COO Joe Haniford will become Vice President,
Business Management Office while former CTO Mike Murtagh has
been appointed Vice President and Group President of Specialty
Alloys Operations (SAO). The search for a new CTO is

the company behind a transport and logistics app for local
auto-rickshaw services, is now the exclusive Indian re-seller
of Korea’s GEM Platform FFF 3D printers. The Chandigarh,
India-based company is also launching Printo, an online store
where custom 3D printed products and prototypes can be

, based in Princeton,
New Jersey, has released its a cloud software tool for 3D
printing. InventoryBot makes it possible to conceive, design,
prototype and manufacture all within a closed loop

My Part,
a service bureau based in Ely, Cambridgeshire, now
accepts payment with Bitcoin, via secure online payment
merchant Bitpay.

Spherical quality of Carpenter's Puris titanium powder. Image via Puris.Spherical quality of
Carpenter’s Puris titanium powder. Image via Puris.

Award-winning hardware

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ONRL) has won
four Excellence in Technology Transfer Awards from the Federal
Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer (FLC), a
nationwide network of more than 300 federal laboratories,
agencies and research centers.

Amongst the winners was ONRL’s
Big Area Additive Manufacturing
(BAAM), co-developed by and
licensed to Cincinnati Incorporated and Strangpresse. The BAAM
system is capable of 3D printing polymer and composite
structures at a scale 10 times larger and 500 times faster than
previous commercial 3D printing systems.

Record-breaking streamliners and camper vans

The Victory Motorsports team from Dale,
Wisconsin managed to break the Bonneville Salt Flats racing
record using a Windform
duct 3D printed by CRP USA.

The 3.0-liter diesel powered Streamliner
driven by Burton Brown broke a long-standing record in its
class with a two-pass average of around 212mph.

world’s first 3D printed camper van
, manufactured at the
Create Cafe in Saskatoon, Canada, has been completed after 230
hours, and it has been announced as the largest indoor 3D
print ever created.

Live long and prosper

Aerospace systems manufacturer Bronco Combat
Systems (BCS) USA, has launched the Bronco II C4ISR and
precision strike aircraft. The plane was built with rapid
digital prototyping, laser additive 3D printing, and a jig-less
manufacturing approach in a factory equipped for Industry

NASA has successfully tested its
RS-25 rocket engines
at Stennis Space Center in
Mississippi. The rocket’s the engines were outfitted with new
3D-printed parts to reach “113 percent thrust level,” which is
13% above what the engines were designed to achieve 40 years

NASA and its contractor Aerojet Rocketdyne are
currently manufacturing new sets of RS-25 engines for future
expendable Space Launch Systems (SLS) vehicles for future space

Star Trek
, a web-based MMORPG from
Cryptic Studios and Perfect World, has partnered up with
integral software company Mixed
in a 3D printing deal. Star Trek Online
users will be able to order custom 3D printed models of their
own personal starship, generated using Mixed Dimensions
GamePrint software, and painted by hand.

GamePrint model prior to painitng. Photo via GamePrint.GamePrint model prior
to painting. Photo via GamePrint.

3D printing prosthetics in the conflict zone

A 3D-printing prosthetics clinic at a hospital
run by the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontières MSF, in
Irbid, Jordan is helping amputees injured in the fight against
ISIS and children from surrounding areas born with

3D printing technique allows the MSF team to
create simple upper limbs without moving parts, reducing the
costs of manufacturing advanced  prosthetic limbs to
between $20 and $50.

Leif Bülow, a former Danish army soldier has
developed a 3D printing technology of producing various hand
prosthesis, including models with electrically driven
artificial fingers, and is one of many Danish nationals helping
Ukrainians in the current Eastern Ukraine conflict.

Events in regenerative medicine and implants

Regenerative medicine company Collplant, the
developer of rhCollagen technology for tissue repair
bioprinting applications, has announced that it has joined the
RegenMed Development Organization (ReMDO), an advanced
bio-manufacturing initiative for the development of a universal
3D printing BioInk.

Buffalo, NY-based PostProcess Technologies has
announced that it will provide a CENTI automatic
post-processing machine to Johns Hopkins
’s Carnegie Center for Surgical
Innovation. The center 3D prints patient-specific organ models,
and the CENTI machine will remove support material from
PolyJet parts.

Imeco, an Argentinian orthopedic implant
company, was able to provide a patient with a new 3D printed
hip thanks to the online Link3D On Demand platform which
enables its users to search and connect with a global network
of implant manufacturing service bureaus.

The 3rd
International Conference on 3D Printing in Medicine

will run from 4-5 May 2018 in Mainz, Germany.

3D printing makes heads roll

The work of Netherlands-based fashion designer Iris van Herpen
will be on display in a new show at the Phoenix Museum of Art
in Arizona, entitled, Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion.

The new show features many of van Herpen’s 3D
printed “New Couture” dresses, including some designed for
Icelandic singer Björk, and it is open to the public from 24
Feb to 13 May.

The Gucci Show at Milan Fashion Week 2018 was
elaborated by runway models carrying 3D printed versions of
their own heads. Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele
explained that the heads represented self-acceptance and
“looking after your head and thoughts.

The heads were manufactured by Makinarium, a
Rome-based factory of techno-artisans who produce bespoke
special and visual effects.

The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority, RTA
has taken part in the UAE Innovation Month with a 4 by 1.2
meter 3D printed logo of the “Year of Zayed.”

Gucci models at Milan Fashion Week 2018. Photo via Reuters.Gucci models at Milan
Fashion Week 2018. Photo via Reuters.

3D printing for learning and earning

BoingBoing author Jason Weisberger has

uncovered and shared several visionary short
from the 1950s by science teacher and writer
Anatoly Dneprov, which notably feature self-replicating
machines and 3D printing.

Technological University in Singapore
(NTU) has opened The Arc, its second learning hub, which
features the institution’s Singapore Centre for 3D Printing
facilities. It will host research on printable electronics,
lightweight aircraft components, and 3D-printed medical

Two New Zealand tertiary educational
institutions, Whitireia and WelTec have opened Te Auaha, a new
creative campus which will offer students a Bachelor of
Creativity degree. The creative spaces at the institute will
include recording studios, photography facilities, and a
dedicated 3D printing area.

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Featured image shows a section of
 Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion
exhibition at the Carnegie Museum of Art. Photo via Brian

SME reports on 3D printing for point of care medical manufacturing

In a report published by SME, 96% of professionals
3D printing for point of care, e.g. medical models, prosthesis,
implants and surgical guides, expect to see a rise in medical
3D printing throughout 2018.

In the report Lauralyn McDaniel, medical additive manufacturing
industry expert at SME, explains that the rise is due to a
number of patient oriented benefits generated by 3D printing on
demand. “The number one priority for healthcare providers
remains patient care,” comments McDaniel,

“The focus is helping fuel the rise of POC manufacturing
enabled by additive manufacturing, providing benefits for
patients and physicians/institutions including better patient
outcomes, less time in the operating room and reduced costs.”

Conducted by the member organization that seeks to advance
manufacturing across America, the report includes the input of
more than seventy 3D printing in healthcare professionals
Fried Vancraen, CEO of Materialise,
and Katie Weimer, Vice
President of Medical Device Healthcare at 3D Systems.

Katie Weimer and Mike Rensberger of 3D Systems hold a 3D printed surgical model used in the operation on conjoined MacDonald twins. Photo via CNNKatie Weimer and
Mike Rensberger of 3D Systems hold a 3D printed surgical model
used in the operation on conjoined MacDonald twins. Photo via CNN

Point of care in hospitals

Point of care is used to describe devices made “just-in time”
for rapid treatment of a hospital patient. 3D printing for
these devices is either done on-site, like at
Phoenix Children’s Hospital Arizona
, or by contract
manufacturers, as in the case of 3D Systems’ aid in the

separation of the conjoined McDonald twins.

Through a number of case studies, the report collates data on
the apparent rise of the technology as noted by experts.

FDM on top

Unsurprisingly, as the most cost-effective and widely available
technology, Material Extrusion (FDM, FFF, MEM) is the most
common 3D printing for point of care devices.

Most popular 3D printing technologies for point of care medical applications. Image via SMEMost common 3D
printing technologies for point of care medical applications.
Image via SME

In applications, anatomical models are expected to have the
highest rate of growth at 71%, followed by rapid prototyping
and product development (56%) and tooling, jigs, fixtures and
molds (46%).

At present, anatomical models are most commonly used in
surgical planning for sensitive procedures a point that may
shift in the near future.

Writing in one of the report’s use cases Katie Weimer, Vice
President of Medical Device Healthcare at 3D
Systems, comments, “Today, the healthcare 3D printing
largely uses legacy industrial prototyping materials. As the
industry evolves, I believe we will have a bigger impact on
patient care when our materials better replicate the
human body.”

“I believe we will see a revolution into more biomimetic
materials for 3D printing in the healthcare industry.”

Area of growth for 3D printing at point of care. Image via SMEArea of growth for
3D printing at point of care. Image via SME

A full view of 3D printing in healthcare

Interestingly, the report also states that 16 of the U.S. top
20 hospitals (as ranked by the U.S. News and World Report)
have implemented a medical 3D printing strategy in recent
years. Materialise has reported a 3200% rise in centralized 3D
printing facilities using Mimics technology in the
U.S. between 2010 and 2016.

The full white paper from SME
can be read online here.

Make your nominations for medical advance of the years in
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Submit your design for chance to win a 3D printer.

Featured image shows a Stratasys 3D printed anatomical
heart. Photo via: Stratasys on Facebook


Create it REAL raises $1.6 million for faster and more secure 3D printing platform

, a Danish R&D company behind an
IP protection platform
for 3D printers has announced that
it has successfully raised €1.3M ($1.6 million) in a financing
round, led by the state-owned Danish Growth Fund.

The funds raised will be used to further
develop Create it REAL’s forthcoming 3D printing platform, and
its visibility outside the 3D printing industry. “For the
moment, Create it REAL needs to expand its 3D printer
manufacturers portfolio to meet corporate customers’ demand in
different segments,” said Create it REAL founder,
Jeremie Pierre Gay.

Jeremie Pierre Gay
(centre). Photo via Startupworks.

Create it REAL’s forthcoming

Founded by Gay in 2009, Create it REAL
launched the first real-time processor dedicated to 3D printing
in 2013, and later released software
that can prevent the 3D printing of firearms

Its most recent innovation is a 3D printing
encryption platform. By adding a Create it REAL processing chip
to a 3D printer, a file can be directly decrypted and then
3D printed without the user having access to the original

The processor and the encryption platform have since been
combined into a patent-pending platform claims to give a 3D
printer a print speed up to 5 times faster than traditional FDM
printers currently on the market.

Additional features of the platform include an Augmented
Reality feature to preview real size projects, and
a REALvision slicer supports STL and G-code files.

Create it REAL AR preview. Photo via Create it REAL.Create it REAL AR
preview. Photo via Create it REAL.

Funding Create it REAL’s innovation

With the funding round complete, and the platform developed
into a high-end open source board for FFF 3D printers, Create
it REAL now hopes to create strong and long-term
partnerships with 3D printer manufacturers. Jeremie Pierre Gay said,

“We have requests for large printers, PEEK
printers, Metal FDM printers… so we are looking for
manufacturers willing to work with us on these new challenges
and open new markets.”

“The strong interest we are seeing from large companies in the
maritime industry looking for a secured platform confirms our
approach is the right one and will appeal to other industries
as well. Further solutions under development will soon make 3D
printing even simpler, limiting user interaction to a few
clicks,” Gay continued.

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Featured image shows the create it real security open
source platform processor. Photo via CREATE it Real.

Help shape the future of additive manufacturing in the UK

At the Manufacturing
Technology Centre
 (MTC) in Coventry,
Martin Dury, Learning Design Manager, and his team are working
to address the manufacturing skills gap, encouraging UK
businesses to be agile and adopt new technologies. Currently,
 is mapping a number
Additive Manufacturing
Competency Frameworks for all roles in AM.

The frameworks
 intended to
the skills, knowledge and
 required for newly developed AM
roles and identify appropriate training programs for every step
of the process, from requirement capture, design, material
selection and manufacture through to post-processing,
inspection and verification.

To help form a comprehensive outline of the roles and
skills needed
additive manufacturing in the UK, the MTC is
seeking input and contributions
industry experts.

The call is non-process specific, and contributions are
welcome from any sector –
anyone with additive
manufacturing expertise is welcome to contribute
The goal is simply to provide the UK with a

pipeline of trained additive manufacturing professionals
and at present, the MTC is
“the UK’s best kept secret with regards to additive

Wall of members at Coventry's MTC, including Rolls-Royce, Airbus, EOS and Autodesk. Photo by Beau JacksonWall of members at
Coventry’s MTC, including Rolls-Royce, Airbus, EOS and Autodesk.
Photo by Beau Jackson

Pinpointing the AM skills gap

The MTC’s Additive Manufacturing Competency
will be developed to include role
descriptions for Design, Materials, Non-destructive testing,
Metrology and Manufacturing engineers, plus Manufacturing,
Materials, NDT and Metrology Technicians.

Once defined, Dury and the
team will compare these
 with any existing
training programs in the UK, making
ecommendations for
additive manufacturing

For any gaps identified, Dury and the
team will then work to develop appropriate AM apprenticeship
and upskilling programs over the next 12 months, working with
the MTC’s 100+ industry members.

A national hub for additive manufacturing

Since its inauguration as an independent
Research & Technology Organisation (RTO) in 2010, the MTC
has maintained an advantage over cutting edge developments in
the manufacturing industry.

MTC specialisms include metrology, augmented reality
(AR), automation, CNC machining and additive

On a recent tour of the MTC’s National Centre for
Additive Manufacturing, I saw firsthand how the facility is
contributing to the UK’s strong engineering sector.
Well-equipped with over 20 
different 3D
printing systems, for both polymers and metals, the MTC offers
experienced advice and research abilities to any partners
seeking to adopt an additive manufacturing process.

The centre’s current membership covers over 100 companies
from across manufacturing industries, including Airbus,
Rolls-Royce, BAE Systems, GE Power, Renishaw, Autodesk, Skanska
and Stratasys.

Renishaw 3D printing system inside the National Centre for Additive Manufacturing. Photo via the MTCRenishaw 3D
printing system inside the National Centre for Additive
Manufacturing. Photo via the MTC

Shape the future of UK additive

The MTC’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre (AMTC)
already offers a number of
additive manufacturing training
designed for decision makers, and
developed as an introduction to industrial 3D printing.
Included in these courses is
a free-learning guide
to give an insight
into all seven defined 3D printing processes.

Contributions for the MTC’s Additive Manufacturing Skills
Competencies Framework close 31 March 2018. Contact the
at [email protected] to
give your input and help shape the future of AM in the

For more on the latest opportunities in additive
manufacturing and upcoming news from the MTC subscribe to
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Industry newsletter
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Featured image shows powder sample
handling at the MTC’s
National Centre for
Additive Manufacturing. Photo via the MTC

Allevi 1 collagen 3D bioprinter technical specifications and pricing

Allevi, the 3D bioprinting company
formerly known as BioBots
, has launched the Allevi 1 3D
bioprinter. Capable of 3D printing with collagen, protein inks,
and biopolymers like PLGA, the new system is a versatile tool
for laboratories, helping to spread Allevi’s mission of making
3D tissue engineering easier, and more accessible.

The perfect lab tool

Around 90% of Allevi customers are academics. Papers citing the
hardware have been written at Massachusetts Institute of Technology
(MIT), the Wake
Forest School of Medicine
, and the University of
in Australia.

At these research universities and more, Allevi 3D bioprinters
have been used to make
type devices,
scaffolds for cell cultures
, and bone grafts. The systems
are also used to test new materials, and develop a homogeneity
for 3D bioinks.

A 3D printed ear model made on an Allevi 3D bioprinter. Photo via AlleviA 3D printed ear
model made on an Allevi 3D bioprinter. Photo via Allevi

The cheapest 3D bioprinter on the market

Allevi’s product range currently covers three systems in total
– the Allevi 2 dual extrusion bioprinter; the Alevi 6 with six
printheads; and now the single extrusion Allevi 1.

With an ability to simultaneously 3D print six types of cells,
the Allevi 6 is priced at $40,000. The Allevi 2, by comparison,
retails for $10,000. And the Allevi 1 is Allevi’s cheapest
system yet at just under $5,000 ($4,995).

According to the company, the Allevi 1 has “the smallest
footprint, widest material capabilities and best price tag of
any 3D bioprinter on the market.”

For 3D printed skin models and more

Extrusion temperature on the Allevi 1 can be controlled for
cooling (up to 4°C) or heating (up to 200°C). The wide
temperature range means that the system can be used with a
broad range of materials, including “living inks” containing
stem cells, curable inks, and collagen, a key component of

skin fabrication

Measuring 12 in x 10 in x 10 in, the Allevi is designed to
be easily moved from bench to bench, and occupy very little lab

As a single extrusion system, it is the simplest Allevi 3D
bioprinter to use, making it an ideal introductory system for
characterising materials and learning the basics.

In addition, as with all Allevi 3D bioprinter, the Allevi 1 is
an open system, allowing researchers to use their own

The Allevi 1 3D bioprinter is available to buy now from the
Allevi website. Full technical specifications can be seen

The Allevi 1 3D bioprinter. Image via AlleviThe Allevi 1 3D
bioprinter. Image via Allevi

Technical specifications

Dimensions: 12 in x 10 in x 10 in

Weight: 14 lb (6.4 kg)

Power requirement: 110V – 240V

Connectivity: USB

Operating Systems: PC and Mac OS

Construction: Aluminum frame

Stepper motors: 0.9 degrees step angle

X,Y Precision: 10 microns

Z Precision: 10 microns

Extruder: Single, heating and cooling

Max temp – low: 4°C

Max temp – high: 200°C

Photocuring: 365 nm or 405 nm

Accepted print files: .stl, GCode

Printing technology: FDM/FFF

Build volume: 9 cm x 13 cm x 6 cm (W x L x H)

Print resolution: 150 micron

Build structure: Petri dish, tissue culture plate

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Could the Allevi 1 be 3D printer of the year? Nominations
for the 2018
3D Printing Awards
 close today.

 is sponsoring the 2018 3D Printing Industry Awards
design competition
. Submit your design now to win a 3D

The Allevi 1 3D bioprinter. Image via Allevi

Sunata software by Atlas 3D streamlines design engineering for 3D printing

, the publisher of cloud-based
additive manufacturing tools has released its Sunata print
preparation software for Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) 3D
printing. The Sunata software computationally calculates the
best orientation and the necessary support structures for metal
3D printing.

Using patent-pending Thermal Circuit Network
(TCN) technology, Sunata aims to save users both money and time
by improving the simulation process to optimize the additive
manufacturing process.

“Design engineering for additive manufacturing
is a bunch of trial and error processes by design engineers,”
explained CEO Chad Barden. “Atlas 3D is trying to make that
“black art” much more science and much less art. We’ve enabled
computers to calculate what the best orientation for a part on
a build plate is.”

Atlas 3D has held America Makes membership since 2017. Photo via America Makes.Atlas 3D has held America
Makes membership since 2017. Photo via America Makes.

A software with origins in design
engineering education

Atlas 3D, based in Plymouth, Indiana, began as
a joint project in 2015 between the Indiana Technology
and Manufacturing Company
(ITAMCO), Notre Dame
, Johnson & Johnson, and the University of

The Project, entitled “Parametric
Design of Functional Support Structures for Metal Alloy
,” aimed to create a training software for
the next generation of additive manufacturing experts.

After $2.75 million of investment from US
national advanced manufacturing network America Makes as part
of its
funding program
, and two years of
development, the software was tested in Indiana high

The students first orient a part on a build
plate themselves, after which Atlas 3D calculates the actual
optimum orientation (for minimal orientation for minimal
thermal distortion), allowing an instructor to explain the
reason for the orientation.

Following initial success, the next step was
to create professional print preparation software that balanced
minimal distortion and reduced print times and. Together with
the technology group at ITAMCO, Atlas 3D created Sunata.

The Sunata software workflow chart. Image via Atlas 3D.The Sunata software
workflow chart. Image via Atlas 3D.

Sunata, the “easy button” for Metal
Additive Manufacturing

Sunata users directly import their designs as
.stl files directly into the cloud-based program (hosted by
Amazon Web Services) and automatically receive the optimal
orientation and associated support structures.

Using the TCN software, Sunata scientifically
parses the print design into thermally similar layers and then
larger thermally similar segments using a thermal modeling
algorithm. After running the design through 100 different
orientations, Sunata suggests optimum orientation and support

Sunata gives users the ability to scale their
requirements from minimal distortion with longer print times,
to marginal distortion with shorter print times. The total
print time and amount of sintered material required is also

Sunata currently works with Aluminum
(AlSi10Mg), Stainless Steel (SS-316L), Stainless Steel
(SS-174), Titanium (Ti 6Al-4V) and recently added QuesTek’s new
Ferrium C64 metal powder. ITAMCO is currently using these
powders and Sunata to 3D print end-use components on an EOS M
290 3D printer.

This is the final day to make nominations
for the

3D Printing Industry Awards
. Submit yours now.

Could your design be this year’s design

is sponsoring

2018 3D Printing Industry Awards design
. Submit your design now to win a
3D printer.

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Featured image shows an Atlas 3D software test by a
Plymouth High School student to 3D print a metal part. Photo
via Atlas 3D.

Nominations close today for the 2018 3D Printing Industry Awards

Who are the enterprises and people leading the additive
manufacturing and 3D printing industry?

On May 17th, leaders of the industry will gather in
London to learn the answer to that question – but first we need
you to tell us.

Today is your last chance to make nominations for

2018 3D Printing Industry Awards

The 2018 3D Printing Industry Awards.The 2018 3D Printing
Industry Awards.

Nominations are open in 20 categories, ranging from 3D
printing start-up of the year, Aerospace or Automotive
application and both industrial and desktop 3D printers using
the full spectrum of materials.

We also want to know about creative uses of 3D printing.
And course, the 3D printing ecosystem would not be complete
without categories for 3D scanning, materials and

We will be announcing the shortlists next week. Also, a
limited number of tickets will be available to our black-tie
dinner event on May 17th. The award ceremony and dinner will
take place and a larger venue this year to accommodate demand,
please contact us for more details.

Nominations close today, so
make your choices now

is sponsoring

2018 3D Printing Industry Awards design
. Submit your design for
chance to win a 3D printer. Don’t forget to share your designs
with us #3DPIAwards.

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SD3D acquires 3D Matter and Optimatter platform, expands digital manufacturing

SD3D has
announced the acquisition of New York based software company 3D
Matter. The purchase price is not disclosed.

When 3D Matter launched in 2015, we reported on how the
startup was

testing 3D printing filaments
. The
acquisition includes the OptiMatter web-based material
optimization software platform. OptiMatter allows designers,
engineers and researchers to optimize 3D printed parts by
comparing materials and processing parameters.

Procedures for the mechanical tests
conducted for OptiMatter material optimization software are
based upon ASTM and ISO standards. The
gives more details of the various
tensile, impact and hardness tests performed. The empirical
data was compiled from
mechanical testing of over
3,000 3D prints.


OptitMatter 3D printing materials testing methodology. Table via 3D Matter.OptitMatter 3D printing
materials testing methodology. Table via 3D Matter.

David Feeney, Founder and CEO of SD3D said, “The
acquisition of OptiMatter is the perfect fit to continue
facilitating growth of the automation ecosystem we have already
developed for 3D printing.”

“SD3D is developing 3D printing standards driven
through automation and OptiMatter serves a critical function
in establishing those standards.”

The tests performed by OptiMatter include addressing the
question of whether premium 3D printer filaments are worth the
additional price. You can

read more about the results here

An extract comparing Stratasys ABSi with FormFutura ApolloX ASA using OptiMatter.An extract comparing
Stratasys ABSi with FormFutura ApolloX ASA using OptiMatter.

Expanding portfolio of automation and optimization

The acquisition expands the software tools available from
SD3D. These tools also include inventory management, sales
automation and
Supervisory control and data
acquisition (SCADA) for factory automation and IoT.

The inventory management tool, Filtracker,
is an Octoprint plugin that, “streamlines the typical 3D
printing workflow by automatically slicing and printing STL
files with the proper settings for the material that is
currently loaded on the printer.”

SD3D also offers product design and CAD services,
connecting end users with designers. One customer is quoted as
saying, “SD3D is the perfect solution for inventors like me who
want to bring a product to market. Kickstarter here I

Describing their range of solutions as the “AWS of 3D
printing”, SD3D are building an interesting ecosystem of 3D
printing solutions designed to manage, “large-scale additive
manufacturing whether your 3D print production is occurring
on-site or in the cloud.”

Speaking about the acquisition, founder and former CEO of
3D Matter, Arthur Sebert, said, “OptiMatter is a very important
tool for the 3D printing industry that 3D Matter created to
help users understand the properties of their printed parts. I
am very happy that OptiMatter is going to be integrated into
SD3D’s robust offering of automation tools because OptiMatter’s
data can now be connected to the rest of the 3D printing
process. That’s what was missing for OptiMatter users so

Does  the SD3D ecosystem of software tools make
the company a leading 3D printing enterprise? Make your
nominations for the

2018 3D Printing Awards
before they close on Wednesday.

For all the latest 3D printing investment news
subscribe to the
most widely
read newsletter in the industry
, follow
us on
and like us on

is sponsoring

2018 3D Printing Industry Awards design
. Submit your design for
chance to win a 3D printer.

Featured image shows part of the AON town project 3D
printed and designed by SD3D.