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Aurora Labs Produces First Powder for use in 3D Metal Printers

Friday, June 22, 2018

Aurora Labs Ltd., an Australian manufacturer of 3D printers, has produced laboratory test-scale powder from its prototype powder production unit (PPU). 

The prototype PPU is intended to test and demonstrate the technology for producing high-quality powders for use with 3D metal printers at lower costs than existing processes. 

“The result for producing our first powder is an outstanding achievement for the company,” says David Budge, Aurora’s managing director. "This development opens up significant new opportunities for the company. We hope that this result will pave the way for Aurora Labs to become a global player in a highly compelling industry.”

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New Technology Makes Any 3D Printer a Metal 3D Printer

Thursday, June 21, 2018

The Virtual Foundry, based in WI, is marketing a new metal 3D printing system that dramatically reduces the entry cost of 3D metal printing. Their technology makes any existing 3D printer a metal 3D printer.

After three years of development with partners and customers in aerospace, petroleum, injection molding, dentistry, education and nuclear energy, The Virtual Foundry is now shipping turnkey debinding and sintering systems that let any size shop print metal in their existing plastics 3D lab, or inexpensively set up a new metal lab.

 The Virtual Foundry’s flagship line of materials, called Filamet, is compatible with FFF/FDM printers, the most common type of 3D printer. The Virtual Foundry has also begun partnering with manufacturers of industrial grade 3D printers to co-market its products. 

“Our open architecture strategy means that as 3D-printing technology improves, so does the final product created with Filamet,” says Bradley Woods, founder of The Virtual Foundry.

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Penn State to Open Finishing Lab for 3D-Printed Metal Parts

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

This year, Penn State will step forward in 3D metal printing with the installation of a finishing lab for printed parts. Penn State received over $535,000 for the lab, which will complement the existing subtractive processing technology in the Factory for Advanced Manufacturing Education Lab within the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering. 

The finishing equipment will transform 3D-printed parts into components ready for product assembly. The one-year project, called Super Finishing of Printed Metallic Parts for High Performance Naval Systems, is funded by the Defense University Research Instrumentation Program, which operates through the Department of Defense’s Office of Naval Research. 

“The Navy has a strong interest in identifying and researching the technical issues of using 3D-printed metal parts for naval applications now and in the future,” says Ed De Meter, principal investigator on the project and professor in the engineering department. “They want to better understand how to design parts while identifying potential barriers and also benefits that may arise between the metal printing process and any secondary processing that is done to smooth out the surface texture of these parts.”

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Virginia Tech Researchers Develop New 3D-Printing Method

Tuesday, June 19, 2018
A team of researchers from Virginia Tech University has developed a new method of microscale 3D printing, using resin mixing and robotics to 3D print multimaterial with programmable stiffness – without cross-contaminating any of the properties.

This new method, dubbed multimaterial programmable additive manufacturing with integrated resin delivery, has a plethora of potential uses. These include actuation, aircraft-wing structures, artificial muscles, energy absorption, flexible armor, microrobotics and protective coatings.

Stretching a material in one direction usually means shrinkage in another direction. But, Virginia Tech’s patented multimaterial process and design makes it possible to create specific flexibility distributions in a build, which allows for programmed shrinkage or expansion to take place throughout the material body. The action also is known as programmed morphing.

“We use this new technique to create materials with programmed stiffness,” explains Xiaoyu Zheng, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Virgina Tech. “You can program where the modulus is distributed in 3D. With this programming we can achieve morphing capability—to stretch and deform in different directions.” 

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AddUp Acquires BeAM

Monday, June 18, 2018

AddUp, a French producer of 3D metal printers and production lines, recently announced the acquisition of BeAM, a fabricant of directed energy deposition (DED) technology, an additive manufacturing (AM) process dedicated to the production of large parts and the repair market.

The acquisition of BeAM enables AddUp to expand its portfolio of metal-AM technologies to better satisfy the needs of its customers and to strengthen its worldwide geographic coverage. BeAM’s DED technology complements AddUp’s laser-beam-melting technology, covering specific market segments, such as large, highly complex parts, component repair and feature addition.

“Together, BeAM and AddUp will be uniquely positioned in the AM market by offering their customers a comprehensive range of metal AM solutions, with, in particular, training and consulting, 3D printing systems and the making of parts for proof of concept (POC),” says Vincent Ferreiro, AddUp’s CEO. This acquisition also strengthens AddUp’s role as a leading player in the French 3D metal printing ecosystem with more than 100 engineers working on the development of new solutions. 

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