Wiivv Lays Mass Customization at Your Feet

As Internet users become increasingly accustomed to the personalization provided by their Facebook cover pictures and Tumblr themes and the countless variety of products on Amazon. com, they could also begin to expect exactly the same customization and wide selection with regards to purchasing everyday consumer items such as clothing.

Very few manufacturing technologies can handle delivering such individually tailored products simply because 3D printing. Because they are able to translate 3D documents into physical fact, 3D printers can shift from producing one geometrically complex item to another without the need to create entirely fresh injection molds. The bulk customization many anticipate to end up being on the making horizon will likely rely intensely on 3D printing technology for this reason.

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3D-printed insoles from Wiivv. (Image courtesy of Wiivv. )

One product that may seriously benefit from a 3D-printed touch fits in the niche between your foot and the sole of your shoe. When it comes to insoles, not only has 3D printing matured sufficiently to make mass customization feasible, but orthotics can actually benefit from the technology. Compared to the standard one-size-fits-all approach of bulk manufacturing rather, insoles should be designed to fit their wearer.

At least a few companies want to tackle the orthopedic marketplace by merging 3D scanning with 3D publishing to provide insoles a much- required 21st-century update. Of these firms, Wiivv Wearables stands out by launching the most funded 3D-printed product on Kickstarter.

What It Takes to Make an Insole:

Traditionally, custom shoe inserts are made through such antiquated techniques mainly because plaster casting and foam box impressions. Patients will have their ft cast in fiberglass or plaster or, alternatively, get a foam impression of their foot by pushing them into boxes specially created for the purpose of creating custom made insoles. The cast or impact is then delivered to an orthotics laboratory that utilizes these molds as negatives with which to create the final insert.

Even more recently, 3D scanners have already been developed to create digital types of foot, which are then used as the foundation for CNC milling a foam block into the orthotic insole. Technology by Wiivv and other startups seems to get this process a step additional, combining the widespread energy of smartphones with the additive energy of 3D printing to streamline the process while also making it more accessible to a greater audience.

3D Scanning with the Touch of a Button:

Though smartphones may soon feature built-in 3D scanners, a number of software developers are leveraging the principles of photogrammetry to translate a number of 2D images into 3D models. Wiivv utilizes its proprietary software to transform pictures used with a smartphone into custom-fitted insoles.

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A new Wiivv graphic illustrating the photograph measurement process. (Image thanks to Wiivv Wearables. )

The Wiivv iOS app is easy to use. All that’s required is to snap a picture of each foot from the top, with your heel pressed against a wall and on top of a blank sheet of paper. Then, you take pictures from the relative side together with your iPhone on to the floor and leaning against a walls . The same photograph is taken without your feet aswell, giving the Wiivv software program a background that your foot can be isolated.

Without giving away any tech secrets, Manuj Aggarwal, director of software at Wiivv, explained how the software works, “We take the images and run them through a series of sophisticated and proprietary image processing and computer vision algorithms to detect and extract the data from these 2D images and construct a 3D model from it. This 3D model is tell you our customization engine to create biomechanically engineered products then, which best are custom insoles now. ”

The shoe insert is further personalized through the selection of one of six different patterns for the top layer of the insole and one of four different colors for the base. Combined with the 3D model created by the five photos snapped with the Wiivv iOS app, the ongoing company has everything it needs to begin manufacturing the merchandise.

3D Printing for each Individual:

Wiivv can 3D printing a number of insoles within all of its selective laser beam sintering (SLS) 3D printers, located at the firm’s manufacturing amenities in San Diego, Calif. The entire manufacturing process is really a trade magic formula, but Ryan Coyne, director of manufacturing and operations at Wiivv, did admit that there are nonadditive technologies involved in the ultimate construction of the insoles, as well as some company-specific techniques applied when post-processing the products once they are 3D printed.

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The 3D-printed nylon insole is combined with a neoprene cushion. ( Image courtesy of Wiivv. )

Coyne explained, “You can find very unique processes and measures necessary to prepare and finish custom made 3D-printed parts. While a vision is being built by us for the mass customization factory into the future, there are many processes which are performed manually that people are building automations for presently. The machines and the various tools we use have been particularly chosen to produce the standard of finish we anticipate from our finished item. ”

The opportunity to 3D printing in-house, in accordance with Coyne, allows the business to efficiently iterate products rapidly and, along with advance the manufacturing technology itself. “[W]e may also be looking to the near future and the capability to iterate on the developing process itself. Wiivv will undoubtedly be at the forefront of the adaptive manufacturing revolution required for the production of mass customized, body perfect gear. ”

The materials used for the process are, again, a closely guarded secret, but Wiivv does rely on some materials from Evonik, a German chemical company that provides powders for SLS such as polyamide 12. The company recently announced that it has joined HP’s Open Platform system and will developing components for the tech giant’s fresh Multi Jet Fusion (MJF) 3D printing technology. Evonik can be an investor in Wiivv also, but there has not however ended up any announcement that MJF will undoubtedly be used to produce another generation of Wiivv items.

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3D-printed insoles custom-made for your toes of the author.

Using Wiivv’s 3D-printed insoles is a tad easier than utilizing the iOS app. You simply slip them into your shoe and begin walking. The 3D-printed, nylon base is quite firm, but the neoprene cushion and silicone heel pad are extremely soft. The real way that the bottom insoles curve exactly together with your foot makes them a lot more comfortable. The thought of having your name imprinted onto both sides of the orthotics certainly feels individual, like owning a luxury item tailored just to you.

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The 3D-printed side of the Base insole with silicone heel pad and anti-slip tread. The author’s title is 3D printed in to the insole directly, below an individual serial number just.

Whether they’ll add “ten active decades ” to my life, like Wiivv hopes its items shall, is yet to end up being determined, however they seem as though they could make moving around on your feet a bit easier.

Beyond 3D-Printed Insoles:

Everyone we spoke with at Wiivv made it clear that the company is not limiting itself to 3D-printed insoles. In actuality, custom inserts are simply a stepping stone to items tailored to the proper execution and fit of each individual.

Shamil Hargovan, cEO and co-founder of Wiivv, hinted that the ongoing firm would begin its product growth in your community of footwear. Hargovan explained, “Wiivv is looking forward to expanding in the footwear space with new products, partnerships, distribution partners and evolving our adaptive manufacturing system to further reduce costs and decrease delivery times. ”

Hargovan further hinted that new apps were on the way that may even involve new mobile technologies (Tango, anyone? ): “Bringing more of our technology straight into the hands of the buyer via their smartphone and leveraging brand-new mobile device technologies are methods Wiivv is concentrating on continuing to grow our brand name and tech stack. ”

Additionally , Wiivv appears to be looking towards the continuing future of manufacturing simply because a whole, probably embarking on a distributed style of production. Aggarwal pointed out that the software is not limited to capturing foot data or even to photogrammetry. Some other 3D scanning technology can be implemented for designing products that fit folks from head to toe.

“The way we are going about building our stack is more of a platform approach rather than an app approach. This system could possibly be used to onboard several manufacturers who’ve much larger capacities and far deeper geographical achieve than Wiivv. We’re able to leverage the power of our software platform to quickly route our custom fitted products to these 3rd party manufacturing services and ship these products to Wiivv customers quickly and efficiently, ” Aggarwal said.

Aggarwal also hinted at the use of other 3D scanning technology that brings Tango to mind, saying, “Moreover, our platform is made to accommodate adaptive manufacturing processes and can work with any input-aka ‘scanner agnostic’-and may produce any format of result. So , than following a particular manufacturing process rather, we are creating a flexible, scalable software platform. ”

Nothing is More Technical Than People:

In other words, Wiivv has a flexible method of manufacturing that quite a few might say is both essential to 3D printing as a way of end production and a far more sustainable manufacturing model overall. Also companies like Airbus have started to provide credence to distributed developing, which would see technologies like 3D printing used to create products locally and on-demand, thus limiting the fossil fuels (and costs) associated with shipping, reducing wastage associated with maintaining stock and promoting local economies.

All of this is leading towards a more personalized experience for individual consumers. Hargovan suggested that “one-size-fits-all” doesn’t apply to modern shoppers. “ What if the same type of customized product could be offered at the same price as its generic substitute and in exactly the same amount of period? This is actually the point of bulk customization-creating a fresh standard that every product could be custom built for every person and their need claims, without more time or cost, ” Hargovan said.

Hargovan added, “One of the most unique and complicated objects in this world may be the human body-from fingerprints to iris patterns, we are unique in many ways. Wiivv is creating body perfect gear that is available for the everyday consumer, custom built for them at a comparable price to the ‘off the shelf’ alternatives. ”

The basic idea here’s that individuals are, after all, individuals. As bulk customization becomes possible, not merely will our social media marketing pages reflect our individuality, however the products we eat will too. Wiivv, specifically, aims to operate a vehicle this trend. The firm may be starting with insoles, but it’s clear that new products will be rolled out just as new 3D printing and scanning technologies hit the market.

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Nippon Steel Develops Stronger and Lighter Automotive Steel

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Nippon Steel’s new automotive sheet metal is 25 % stronger and 20-30 pct lighter compared to the toughest high-tensile steel available.

The battle between aluminum and steel for dominance in the automotive sector rages on, and in wake of a potential third combatant entering the ring even, steel has struck another blow.

Based on the Nikkei Asian Critique, Nippon Metal & Sumitomo Metal is rolling out a new type of automotive steel sheet that’s 25 % stronger and 20-30 pct lighter compared to the toughest high-tensile steel available today.

Currently, the best grade of cold-rolled steel that is commercially available has a strength of 1, 180 MPa (171 ksi). In comparison, the new steel has a strength of 1 1, 470 MPa (213 ksi). The new steel was produced through improvements to the heat treatment process and the inclusion of alloy elements. As a result, the material is more resistant to cracks from the stamping process.

Although the material is still not as light as aluminum alloy or carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic, its price is only 30 percent of aluminum’s and approximately five percent of carbon fiber’s. Nippon Steel is currently conducting verification tests, and plans to market the product for use in vehicle frames, chassis and other automotive components in 2020.

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China Seeks to Join Top 10 Robotics Nations by 2020

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China is looking to aggressively expand its robotics market at home and join the top 10 of the world’s most intensively automated nations by 2020, skyrocketing from their current rank of 28th.

As of now, China’s manufacturing industry has a ratio of 36 robot units per 10, 000 employees. The China Machinery Industry Federation has announced that its goal is to more than quadruple this number to 150 robot units per 10, 000 employees in less than four years.

As a point of reference, South Korea stands in first place with 478 units, while the US occupies 7th place at 164.

For China to try and claim 8th place in the robots per employees ranking, they might need to produce and sell 100 domestically, 000 industrial robots from now until 2020 annually.

Today, Chinese manufacturers take into account only 31 pct of the sales volume within their domestic industrial robot marketplace. Foreign manufacturers command the rest of the 69 percent of the marketplace share.

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( Picture courtesy the International Federation of Robotics. )

Chinese manufacturers only accounted for 25 % of the domestic market share inside 2013.

“By the finish of 2020, I reckon that the share of the domestic market enjoyed by Chinese robotic manufacturers could well increase to 50 percent, ” said Dr . Daokui Qu, CEO of the Chinese robot maker Siasun, at the recent International Federation of Robotics CEO Round Table in Munich.

The fast growth the Chinese market is experiencing is largely motivated by the Made in China 2025 (MiC2025) policy, incentivising manufacturers to take on quality-over-quantity philosophies, as well as a drive to innovate in industrial automation in an effort to become a high-quality manufacturing nation.

Midea Enters Fortune Global 500 as Shares in KUKA reach 85. 7 Percent:

Chinese companies like Midea seem to be taking the policy seriously.

Midea recently took control over Kuka after the company claimed 85. 7 percent of the German company’s shares in an USD$4. 4 billion bid.

The home appliance manufacturer turned smart automation mogul announced that it has entered the Fortune Global 500 for the first time at 481st, july 20th after the updated ranking of the world’s largest corporations were declared on.

Midea offers invested $3 billion in analysis and development in the last five years and today operates R&D institutes in america, Japan, Germany, Singapore and italy.

The Chinese company also acquired Toshiba’s house appliance business this season and 80 percent of the Italian air-conditioning producer Clivet, for $145 million.

Midea’s global platform operates a lot more than 200 subsidiaries now, nine strategic business products and several full-scale functions covering R&D, sales and manufacturing in 6 countries, like Vietnam, India, Belarus, Egypt, Argentina and brazil.

Midea and Foxconn are primary types of how China’s MiC2025 policy is attempting to incentivize its major manufacturers. That is also something Western manufacturers and policy-makers have to keep an eyesight on should they don’t want to end up being removed guard when 2025 lastly rolls around.

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Draught Beer at 36,000 Feet

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Welcome to the mile- large pub. (Image courtesy of KLM. )

Of the canned beer generally available on airplanes instead, passengers of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines may shortly be able to enjoy ale at high altitudes because of the business’s partnership with Heinkein and a specialized keg design.

A Keg Designed for Air travel:

Heineken’s product developer, Edwin Griffioen, had to create a keg design with the capacity of fitting in the small room of an airline aisle without needing the skin tightening and cartridges often found house tap installations being that they are prohibited on airplanes.

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Diagram of a standard ale system. (Image thanks to BeerTech. )

The design also had to take into consideration the difference in pressure at thin air, with lower air strain on the airplane in comparison to sea level. For this reason, typical beer taps would create an excessive amount of foam if applied to airplanes.
The key, according to Griffioen, is the balancing air pressure and the diameter of the tap.

“We managed to set the diameter of the tap and the air flow pressure to exactly the right combination, which delivers at 36, 000 feet (11, 000 m) exactly the same beer as you would get on the ground, ” he said.

The kegs also had to be compressed to fit into the airline catering trolley space, which meant sacrificing the cooling system.

To compensate for the lack of conventional refrigeration, the drinks trolley was redesigned to act like a thermos and keep the beer under 5°C. Heineken reports that the beer flavor is unchanged. Delivered chilly to the Amsterdam Airport, four kegs can be loaded onto each flight.

“We are always looking for typical Dutch products to set us apart from other companies, ” said KLM in-flight solutions vice president Miriam Kartman. “Heineken has been our beer partner for many years, and we both know that customers rate a beer from draught higher than out of a can. ”

The good thing for beer connoisseurs is that the on-tap beer is likely to be available next month. Start of the tap provider is pending before airline obtains basic safety certificates from civil aviation authorities.

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Electric Motorcycle Refuses to Tip Over

Have you ever heard of the Ford Gyron?

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Ford Motor Company’s Gyron idea car.

Unveiled with the Detroit Motor Show within 1961, this idea car was stabilized making use of gyroscopes. Unfortunately, it had been never put into production.

However , a power enclosed motorcycle from Lit Motors aims to regenerate this concept and place it into practical use. Meet up with the C-1.

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(Image thanks to Lit Motors. )

The founder of the look, Danny Kim, created this two-person vehicle to supply a level of safety without ordinary motorcycles.

A Motorcycle that Never Drops Down:

The C-1 is indeed small; how could it possibly supply the safety against collisions with large trucks? Designers do not disappoint in this area since the vehicle includes seat belts, multiple airbags and a steel-reinforced framework to provide the safety normally found in four-wheeled cars.

The technology preventing the vehicle from tipping is the gyroscopic stability system: two large gyros on the bottom spin in opposite directions to keep the vehicle upright. They’re so powerful, the C-1 can withstand a sideways impact from an SUV and not tip over.

This video demonstrates the smart design of the vehicle, which remains upright when force is applied:

A gyroscope is a spinning wheel and maintains its spin axis direction independent of the outer frame orientation. If rotated or tilted, the spin axis position is maintained since the gyroscope design applies the conservation of angular momentum.

Key Features of the C-1:

According to the vehicle’s designer, the C-1 is 100 percent electric, reaches speeds beyond 100 miles per hour and has a range of up to 200 miles before needing to recharge. High-torque, in-hub motors allow the vehicle to accelerate from zero to 60 in six seconds.

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The Gyroscopes inside the C-1. (Image courtesy of Lit Motors. )

Charge times depend on the voltage; it can take six hours (110/120 volts) or less than a half hour (400/500 volts). There is room for either two passengers or one passenger with room for daily needs.
The official delivery start date has not been announced, but preorders estimate a price of $24, 000.

Oftentimes, drivers go to work in their large SUVs that can seat four to six people; hopefully, the C-1 will undoubtedly be available, and if purchased, the pollution from vehicles is a nagging problem of days gone by.

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New Disney computer model predicts how people perceive softness of 3D printed objects

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As we’ve seen over the last few weeks, Disney has become very interested in 3D printing – perhaps because they are envisioning a future for custom 3D printed toys and merchandise. However in many ways, dependable 3D printing production is quite limited still. From high-res 3D printing procedures to replicating reflective attributes onto 3D printed surfaces, Disney has been tackling various production challenges therefore. Sufficient reason for their newest computer design, they have tackled what may be the most significant issue for 3D printed playthings: how individuals perceive the softness of 3D printed objects.

For that is something that is largely unpredictable. Identical 3D printed objects made on two separate 3D printers don’t necessarily feel the same, and a lot of factors are involved – from materials and textures to expectations. In accordance with Disney researcher David Levin, predicting the softness causes could possibly be crucial for the production associated with predictable and interchangeable toys.

With MIT’s Wojciech Matusik and reseachers Piotr Didyk jointly, Michal Piovarč we, Hanspeter Pfister, Jason Rebello, Desai Chen and Roman Durikovič, he or she therefore developed a fresh computer model which you can use to predict the softness or even stiffness of specific 3D printable materials. Their results have simply been published in a document entitled An interaction-Aware, Perceptual Model for Non-Linear Elastic Objects.

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As you can expect, this is a quite challenging issue because touch is everything – from consumers to doctors, everyone uses it and haptic impression is arguably one of the most important senses we have. While a lot can be achieved with material choices, 3D printers are regrettably limited to a select group of options – and when 3D printed those materials bring their very own haptic attributes to the table. Lastly, the 3D printers themselves and the parameters utilized can all affect the ultimate results.

To be certain, the Disney team aren’t the first to try to predict these features – other research have sought to deal with the issue through micro-structures and regular metrics (L2 standards). Nevertheless, those approaches ignored an essential component for haptic conversation: the users themselves. “People make use of many cues to guage softness, including texture, location and size, so that it was critical to bottom the model on which humans perceive. This team was able to use that input to accurately predict how objects of various materials and geometries will sense, ” Jessica Hodgins, vice president at Disney Study, said.

To develop their perceptual model, the experts consequently had to jump into human experimentation. And as softness is determined by a lot of factors, the researchers first developed several internal structures of objects that can be used to tailor how an object responds to squeezes and pokes. As the experts explained, this compensates for the different ‘feeling’ different materials have. “Since physical stiffness could be expressed making use of measured force-displacement data, we think about this as the major cue for compliance. Therefore, we look for a relation between your force-displacement characteristic and the ” sensation ” of compliance, ” they state.

During the development of these model, they therefore produced twelve different sample materials initial, all 3D printed within cubes with different cylindrical inner structures – each defined by the particular four parameters of block dimension, distance between your cylinders and two radii pertaining to the cylinders. We were holding presented to 20 individuals during 78 blind trials, for a complete of just one 1, 560 comparisons. “ These were asked to guage which test block was even more similar to the reference when it comes to softness. Individuals were asked to connect to the samples in a path perpendicular to their surface. The result is removed by this conversation mode of anisotropy within the fabricated cubes, ” the researchers say.

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The full total results were intriguing. “ Normally, in 72. 22% of the instances subjects gave the same answer. Next, to test the inter-subject variability, we asked all participants to perform one trial on the same set of randomly chosen 36 triplets. On average, 93. 88% of all responses were consistent with majority votes, ” the researchers reveal. This data enabled the Disney team to compare various computational models, letting them identify the ones that can accurately and effectively evaluate human-perceived differences in non-linear stiffness. This subsequently resulted in the development of these own perception-predicting model which, while not fool-proof, certainly can be applied in practical production situations and even for complex geometries.

To examine the model, the researchers even set up a further experiment with a seahorse model 3D printed in five different materials, all with different properties: TangoBlack+ (Objet500 Connex), TPU 92A-1 ( Laser beam printer), Flexible resin (Ember printer), Smooth-On Dragon Epidermis 30 silicone rubber (casting), and Smooth- In Ecoflex 00-30 silicone rubber (casting).

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With all the L2 norms, simply 85 of the 160 human preferences were correctly predicted (53 percent). “ On the other hand, our model could predict 125 answers (78%). The prediction was in keeping with the majority vote always. This suggests that through the design process our design can offer meaningful suggestions to artists concerning the material choice, ” the scientists say.

Without completely foolproof thus, it certainly appears like the Disney model may more accurately predict perceived distinctions between objects than other versions. Finally, their method is also much quicker that competing models. While perception is obviously based on more than just poking ( which the Disney model focused on ), this tool can certainly be helpful. Specifically, the researchers believe that their model can manual the 3D printing process to ensure that different 3D printers using different materials can ultimately produce objects that feel the same. Could this imply that 3D printed Disney playthings are coming finally?

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Catch ’em all! This 3D printed Pokémon Go iPhone case makes every Poke Ball throw perfect

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Something miraculous has been happening for about three weeks or so. A generation that was thought to never use their knees again suddenly got up and spent hours walking outside and exploring the countryside. And all it took was a special app inspired by the most addictive franchise in the world: Pokémon. And while Pokémon Go has been designed to be accessible to players of every skill level, there’s just one hurdle that many players struggle with: throwing Poké Balls. While it looks so simple, getting a perfect swipe to throw the Poké Ball and catch that Psyduck can be a very frustrating process. But there is a solution: a 3D printable iPhone case that ensures a perfect swipe, each and every time.

Of course this is by no means the initial Pokémon Go-related 3D publishing project. Just last week, developers used 3D printers to deal with the most annoying limitation of smartphone technologies: battery life. Their remedy? A completely thematic 3D imprinted PokéDex smartphone case that doubles being an extra battery pack.

While that smartphone situation certainly enables users to include a few extra miles with their Poké Adventures, it does nothing to make catching those Zubats any easier. And we’ve all been faced with that frustrating reality when we just can’t seem to perfectly flick the balls in a straight line. We’d rather not disclose how many Poké Ball we’ve wasted ourselves. Let’s just say that the nearby Poké Stop is of vital importance. But the Poké Golf ball Aimer by John Cleaver could be the perfect solution. A 3D printable iPhone situation, it includes a special trench that addresses the majority of the screen and means that your aim is genuine every time.

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Designed for the apple iphone 6, it’s an ingenious small 3D printing project that simply shows just what a bright mind can perform with a desktop FDM 3D printers. While John didn’t disclose his known reasons for designing it, we are able to only assume he struggles along with his Poké Balls just as much as we perform. “Can’t very get that perfect throw? Frustrated when countless Poké Balls randomly sideways fly? Worry no more! This 3D printable Poké Balls aimer ensures your finger in no way goes astray. Slip your iPhone in to the case simply, provide it a flick, and you’ll be getting Pokémon easily, ” he says of the design.

This clever little display cover will be fairly straightforward to 3D print, and should fit on just about every 3D printing platform out there. If you’re interested, you can find the downloadable designs on Thingiverse here. What’s more, though this case is currently only compatible with the iPhone 6, John already said that he intends to alter it for other phones if there is sufficient interest.

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The only downside is that the Poké Ball Aimer is definitely a screen cover. It hides quite a lot of the cool details and the Pokémon’s CP number, only leaving room for a couple of on-screen controls. Even more frustratingly, it really won’t be usable for gym battles and can make navigating on the augmented actuality map much more difficult. This may mean having it off and placing it back on once again repeatedly – but at the very least it’ll save you a great deal of Poké Balls and journeys to the Poké Stop. It is possible to wonder if this screen cover up is a form of cheating also, but remember: everything goes into love, war and Pokémon.

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Nuclear power and 3D printing are the driving forces behind Audi F-Tron Concept car

Russian automobile designer Grigory Gorin has made the Audi Mesarthim F-Tron Quattro, a nuclear- driven, 3D printed concept car. The monocoque chassis of the electric motor car would be 3D published in a lightweight steel alloy, with the engine driven by way of a fusion reactor with plasma injectors.

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With the impact of global warming being felt all over the planet, the necessity to switch from fossil fuels to cleaner resources of energy has never been more urgent. Wind, solar, and nuclear power all offer you cleaner energy alternatives to fossil fuels, but their implementation has so far been limited to electricity generation in a handful of forward-thinking countries. And while the need to convert energy stations to greener methods is completely imperative, there remains another large greenhouse gasoline offender on every street: cars. Putting two and two collectively when it comes to clean energy and auto emissions is Russian car designer Grigory Gorin, whose new 3D printed concept car uses a nuclear fusion reactor instead of a petrol engine.

Gorin’s Batmobile-esque new design is an Audi Concept, named the “Audi Mesarthim F-Tron Quattro” after the Mesarthim star system in the Aries constellation. And while the fusion reactor at the car’s core won’t burn for an incredible number of years, it could, in accordance with its developer, generate cleaner and much more efficient energy to strength the super-cool, Audi-inspired vehicle where it sits. The F-Tron’s fusion reactor and plasma injectors are usually encircled by converters which transform the reactor’s heat energy into steam ( which can later on be reused via condensers). The generated steam then spins a turbine attached to a generator, which charges batteries attached to the front, back, and sides of the car. These batteries power wheel-mounted electrical motors which propel the automobile.

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Along with its innovative nuclear engine, the F-Tron concept car includes a stylish 3D printed monocoque chassis also, dubbed the “ Strong Cage, ” which may be 3D printed in a light-weight alloy with polymer assistance. This 3D published chassis encloses the powertrain, that may just be accessed after removing parts of the 3D printed entire body, while a magnetic hydro- powerful handling system installed on the car’s underside really helps to develop downforce and improve handling utilizing a magnetic liquid which reacts to a magnetic street surface area. Gorin’s incorporation of additive making technologies follows similar 3D printed idea car styles from EDAG, Rolls-Royce, Shell, among others.

“ The thought of the project Mesarthim F-Tron is to draw attention to nuclear fusion and [the possibility of using it as a] safe and environmentally friendly energy source, ” said Gorin, who sees nuclear fusion as the natural next destination for the power sector. According to the Russian car designer, “ it will be possible to supply energy to almost all of the population of the planet ” when industry finally makes such a move.

Gorin’s ambitious design probably won’t be adopted by Audi any time soon, but if cars of the future do end up using a mix of nuclear fusion and 3D printing technology, the Russian designer could have right to feel pleased with his weird and wonderful design every.

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Revolutionary Chinese all-in-one casting and forging metal 3D printer used for stealth jet fighters

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The Chengdu J-20.

Last week just, a team of Chinese researchers from the Huazhong University of Science unveiled a truly remarkable 3D printer that could change metal manufacturing altogether: the all-in-one casting and forging metal 3D printer. This revolutionary machine combines 3D printing, casting and forging in a single device, and produces high quality results while eliminating excess material and equipment costs. It thus certainly has the potential to be used in just about any industry, but Chinese aviation specialists are the first to adopt it and are using this 3D printer to produce critical parts for China’s fifth generation fighter jets, including the stealthy Chengdu J-20 and the Shenyang J-31.

Of course this is by no means the first time the Chinese government applied 3D printing to military production; Chinese warships first started taking 3D printers to sea back early 2015 having an optical eye in emergency repairs. However the fact this new 3D printer can be used for critical part creation showcases its usefulness and dependability already.

The 3D printer itself originated beneath the leadership of Zhang Haiou, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Huazhong University of Research. Upon its unveiling, he claimed to possess “broken the largest obstacle facing the 3D publishing business. ” This disruptive technological is especially remarkable for realizing an increased part strength and toughness ( compared to other technologies), an improved product lifecycle, and higher reliability.

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According to its developers, the technology can also be used to create thin-walled metal components while eliminating excess material and gear costs. Relying on an affordable electric arc as a warmth source and low-cost metal wire as a raw material, it features an utilization rate of up to 80% or more – whereas traditional techniques are lucky to reach 5%. Of course the necessity for huge casting, forging and milling devices can be removed – as all processes are usually directly managed through the 3D printer – to help expand reduce the dependence on investments.

What’s more, the 3D printer is quite open and large to an array of materials. The first iteration of the hardware could work with eight kinds of components, like titanium alloy, for aircraft and marine make use of, and steel, for used in nuclear power stations. This device has already successfully built a component that 2. 2 m long and weighs 260 kg, as well as a forging part measuring 1800 × 1400 × 50 mm. An even larger version of the 3D printer is already under development.

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But the all-in-one casting and forging metal 3D printer is also remarkable for one other reason: the 60-year-old professor Zhang Haiou developed it in collaboration with his wife professor Wang Guilan, 53, who teaches at the same university. Together, they have been working on metal manufacturing techniques for more than 18 years, and they frequently clashed about it. Back in 2008, they had a combat about Zhang Haiou’s proposal to integrate casting even, milling and forging within a machine – which his spouse called a fantasy. “I do not really blame her, as casting, forging, milling have existed as divided technologies for a large number of years, ” the professor recalled.

But the quarrel did open up their minds an resulted in a number of experimentations with a team of learners. “At that time I thought that if it does not work, at least he could just give up, ” his wife recalled. “Although I frequently criticize his failed tests, I unconsciously use his options for testing still. When it’s wrong, we begin arguing, but try soon again. ” The couple spend the majority of their time focusing on R&D.

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The Shenyang J-31.

While the researchers themselves earlier said that their innovations will be especially useful in the aerospace, production and automotive industries, the Chinese defense sector cannot pass up with this technology either. Several components for Chinese fighter jets ( thought as the Chengdu J-20 and the Shenyang J-31) have previously entered limited creation, with all parts made in a single piece – which would’ve been impossible using subtractive manufacturing methods or other metallic 3D printing solutions.

That is a very important breakthrough, as multi-part geometries are believed to negatively affect overall performance and life cycles. The parts themselves are 3D imprinted in TC4 titanium alloy, resulting in excellent tensile strength, yield strength, ductility and toughness properties. Experts already verified that the proper parts tend to be more stable than those created by traditional casting. Sufficient reason for a squadron of twelve J-20 large stealth fighters featuring these correct parts likely to be completed in 2017, it appears like metal 3D printing can be becoming a fundamental element of China’s defense industry.

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Rize Arises with Voxel-Level 3D Printing and Limited Post-Processing

While HP was stealing the display with its Multiple Jet Fusion (MJF) technologies at RAPID 2016, another however unknown company showcased its disruptive 3D printing platform. Not wishing to yet go public with news about its product offering, Mass. – based Rize was quietly telling attendees about its Augmented Polymer Deposition (APD), a patented 3D printing technology able to produce engineering-grade parts with almost no post-processing or toxic fumes and with functional capabilities rivaling those promised by HP with MJF.

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The Rize One 3D printer is capable of 3D printing near isotropic parts without post-processing. (Image courtesy of Rize. )

Rize is now ready to go open public with APD and the brand new Rize A single 3D printer-and there exists a lot to go open public about. For instance, the company has announced its very first beta customer already, Reebok, which will utilize the technology for prototyping sneakers and plastic components for athletic equipment mostly.
Within an interview with ENGINEERING. com, firm President and CEO Frank Marangell could speak at great duration about APD and its own potential effect on 3D printing present and future.

What is APD?

What is immediately most striking in relation to APD is the advantages it has over other technologies, particularly fused deposition modeling (FDM). Unlike FDM, as well as about every other 3D printing process just, APD requires hardly any post-processing. Once a component comes off the print mattress, support structures are easily removed by hand.

No pliers, bead blasting, saws or sanding, as is sometimes required with FDM and stereolithography (SLA) parts. No super glue baths, as can be used with binder jetting. No high-pressure water chemical substance and jetting baths, connected with Multi or PolyJet Jet. And no excavation, as sometimes appears in selective laser sintering.

Instead, APD blends thermoplastic extrusion, similar to FDM, with inkjetting, similar to PolyJet and Multi Jet. As a specialty thermoplastic called Rizium One, developed by Rize in- home, is extruded onto the construct plate, an inkjet head has the capacity to deposit a variety of unique inks to printing for a number of applications.

In the entire case of quick support removal, this material is really a repelling ink called Release One, that is deposited between your print and the help structures. While both print and the helps are manufactured from Rizium One, an engineering- and medical-grade plastic, the Release One prevents the two from forming a strong bond. That way, once the print is complete, the supports can be easily removed from the part.

Ultimately, Rize estimates that easy support removal enables users to cut total 3D printing turnaround time by 50 percent. Marangell relayed that, when a Reebok engineer visited Rize headquarters near Boston, “he previously to go in to the working workplace at 6 am to start out post-processing parts he previously printed over night, otherwise the engineers weren’t likely to obtain parts that day. With the right solution, he wouldn’t have needed to do that. ”

In fact, Gary Rabinovitz, Additive Manufacturing Lab Manager at Reebok, is quoted in a recent Rize press release as saying, “We operate our 3D printers 24/7 to generate the right parts main to Reebok’s innovation and unfortunately, post processing is a necessary but time-consuming and laborious procedure. An easy-to-use, zero post-processing 3D printer like Rize would significantly improve workflow, enabling us to deliver parts as much as 50 pct faster than similar systems, while reducing the price of labor, equipment and materials. ”

The Qualities of Rizium One:

This easy support removal lends some essential properties to the APD platform. First of all, APD allows the Rize One to 3D printing with very strong thermoplastics, such as Rizium One. While Marangell could not disclose the exact nature of Rizium One, he described it as much like polycarbonate (PC) with regards to strength.

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A 3D-printed part created with the Rize One. (Image courtesy of Rize. )

He said that, due to the way that the material bonds during the printing process, Rizium One is able to retain much of its isotropic properties, meaning that the parts printed inside this material have almost exactly the same strength everywhere (X, Y, and Z). This differs from nearly all 3D printing technologies, which cannot create parts which are as solid in the Z-axis, because of the weak bonds that type between each layer of materials. For this good reason, these bonds are known as anisotropic.

“[Rizium One is] a compound thermoplastic that is high up in the engineering thermoplastic pyramid. It’s not one material. It’s not Personal computer, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene ( Abdominal muscles ), or polylactic acid… It offers properties similar to PC. It has about the same strength as PC, although we’ve the effectiveness of ABS in Z twice. We’re nearly isotropic, ” Marangell said.

Marangell explained that components made out of the Rize One only expertise a ten percent loss in isotropic attributes, when compared to stock material. Typical FDM components, however, may lose around 40 pct of their Z-strength. He further pointed out that not even all injection-molded parts have 100-percent isotropy, due to the way that the mold is created.

If the same Rizium One filament were extruded by an FDM machine, however , the support structures would bond too well to the print, making them impossible to remove very effectively. Therefore , the combination of Rizium One with the Launch One enables these PC-like components to be imprinted without support-related issues.

Being an engineering- and medical-grade materials, Rizium One is suitable for both biocompatible and industrial programs. While a manufacturer might use ADP to produce jigs and fixtures, a dentist or doctor might 3D print dental or surgical guides. An added benefit is the fact that, according to Marangell, Rizium One will be eco-friendly in that it generally does not produce ultrafine toxic contaminants while printing.

ABS, however, may create styrene simply because a byproduct, a toxic chemical that’s dangerous when inhaled potentially. For this reason, those 3D printing with Ab muscles should maintain 3D printers in a well-ventilated workshop sometimes, rather than in an office or classroom environment.

Marangell likened his product to the change that has occurred with document printing, in which a printer lab was once separate from the main office, but now it’s possible to have 2D printers on one’s desktop. “That’s what we’re getting to the engineering workplace. That kind or kind of efficiency. Once the chain is damaged by you of the 3D printing laboratory, the opportunity is endless. It is possible to put the machine chairside in a dentist office to make dental drill guides or orthodontic alignment tools. Or in a medical office for medical guides, ” Marangell said.

The thermoplastic used with ADP, however, is not limited to Rizium One. Other plastics come in the ongoing works, including a graphene-infused filament which Marangell suggested could have near-isotropic properties also, completely exploiting the capabilities of graphene everywhere thus.

3D Printing with Voxels:

While HP has claimed the word “voxel” for its own use, the word has been in use to represent three-dimensional pixels since at least the ‘80s. Only since the advent of 3D printing has the word denoted the chance of actually controlling physical issue just how one might control a 2D pixel on some type of computer screen. Up to now, however , HP has been mostly of the companies to claim the opportunity to do so. That’s, until Rize went open public with ADP.

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Voxel-level handle enables ADP to 3D printing full-color parts, although initial release will only print in grayscale. (Image courtesy of Rize. )

“At each voxel, we’re able to jet an additive of our choice. Our IP is based on thermoplastic extrusion and then jetting an additive on each voxel wherever it makes sense to change the characteristic of that material, ” Marangell said.
Due to the inkjet print head, it’s achievable to bind thermoplastic filament with functional inks. For easy assistance removal, that is Release One, but , this August and September as Rize ships its first five beta devices to customers, the Rize One may also come with the opportunity to 3D printing detailed text message and pictures with the company’s Marking Ink. This ink is jetted anyplace and anytime it’s needed in the file to printing directly onto parts.

In future releases, Marangell says, this ability will be expanded to encompass the complete CMYK color profile. More than that, Rize will also come out with other functional materials, such as conductive, thermo-insulating and thermo-conducting inks. “Immediately, imaginable what else we are able to do with [voxel- degree 3D printing]#@@#@!!… It is possible to create active smart sensors to be able to already have a 3D-printed part which has active components in it. You can develop a battery inside a 3D-printed structure. The sky’s the limit. ”

One specific application that the company is working on is the ability to change the mechanical properties of the plastic by coating it with a flexible additive in order to produce comfy, but effective hearing aids. Nowadays are 3D published with SLA technology most of the world’s hearing aids, which limits the construction of these devices to one material property.

What Rize intends to accomplish is to 3D printing them in such a way that the interior channel of the aid is rigid, so that sound can bounce through the hearing canal, while the outside is coated in soft, flexible material so that it fits comfortably within a wearer’s ear.

The Rize Team:

If you’re worked up about ADP and its own potential already, you have the 14- individual Rize team to thank, most of whom have important backgrounds from the number of companies linked to the 3D printing industry. Founder and CTO Eugene Giller, for instance, has been the senior R&D chemist for Z Corp, inventors of the vibrant binder jetting technology responsible for 3D-printed shelfies.

Co-founder Leonid Raiz worked while a senior vice president of PTC before founding architectural CAD firm Revit, which was purchased by 3D Business Software ultimately. Raiz has applied a few of his CAD engineering abilities to integrate a distinctive feature in to the Rize 3D printing software program that fixes imperfect data files and makes them printable.

The firm’s Vice President of Marketing even, Julie Reece, originates from both Mcorp and Zcorp, well-known for its full-color paper 3D printing technology, and the Vice President of CUSTOMER CARE, Amnon Hamami, comes from Stratasys through Objet.

Marangell, too, is really a 3D publishing veteran, having acted mainly because president of Objet THE UNITED STATES. “I was bringing foreign businesses ’ technologies to the US marketplace, many times Israeli companies. When Objet came to the US in 2006, someone told them about me and the rest was history. I started Objet USA and grew it to the point where we were going to do an IPO in 2012 and we finished up merging with Stratasys. ”

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A complex component 3D printed with the Rize One. (Image thanks to Rize. )

Altogether, the united team offers 20 3D printing patents between them. One patent, which includes fallen into public domain right now, is in many ways, according to Marangell, the basis for HP’s MJF. While Giller was at Z Corp, he worked on a technology for fusing plastic powder that was patented by the company. When Z Corp didn’t further pursue it, it fell into open public domain, preventing HP from submitting patenting the technology even.

With all this history, this new startup has seen all of the flaws associated with traditional 3D printing technologies and has the skills necessary to address those flaws. It’s no real surprise after that that Longworth Venture Companions and SB Capital offered Rize with $4 million in seed financing and that ADP offers attracted such a visible customer as Reebok.

The Future of ADP:

In the near term, Rize is prepping for the official discharge of the Rize One. In August and September after delivery out its first five products, the ongoing company will start the entire release in Q4 of the year. Rize plans to market the Rize One with a price of $19, 000, though an all-inclusive package will be sold for about $25, 000.

This price competes with the Stratasys uPrint, which has a roughly $19, 000 price tag. With a larger build volume of 12 in X 8 in X 6 in (300 mm X 200 mm X 150 mm) and prints that don’t require post-processing, however, the value of the Rize may exceed that of the 8 in x 8 in x 6 in (203 mm x 203 mm x 152 mm) uPrint.

In the more distant future, it’s clear that we can expect new materials, new 3D printer models, and some very exciting applications. HP may need to keep its eye with this 3D printing startup just.

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