3D Printing News Briefs: March 9, 2018


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We’re starting with a little business news in today’s 3D Printing News Briefs – while the funding has fallen through for the Idea-2-Product 3D printing center in Colorado, efforts are underway to find alternative methods of keeping the project going. Y Soft’s SafeQ workflow solutions platform was listed in a global study on the future of the print industry, and we’ve learned a little more about DediBot’s flying 3D printer. Morf3D has acquired two EOS metal 3D printers, with intentions of purchasing even more, while FabRx used Sintratec technology for its latest 3D printing medicine work. To end on a happy note (it is Friday, after all), Nanoscribe and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have won the Technology Transfer Prize from the German Physics Association, and the 3Doodler is celebrating its 5th birthday.

Funding Dropped for Colorado State University’s Idea-2-Product New Home

A 3D printer works on a project in the Idea-2-Product Lab in 2016. [Image: Austin Humphreys, The Coloradoan]

The Idea-2-Product (I2P) 3D Printing Laboratory has been a mainstay at Colorado State University since at least 2014, and Dr. David Prawel, I2P founder and a professor with the university’s mechanical engineering research faculty, turned to the city of Fort Collins last year for financial support to move the lab out of the CSU Engineering Building’s basement and into an innovative community center with 3D printing and scanning services. Contingent on Dr. Prawel raising $3 million to get things going, the City Council appropriated $150,000 to support the center. Dr. Prawel was working to attain a $1.5 million grant from Colorado’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade, but his fundraising efforts were not enough, and as the city’s fund had to be used by the end of 2017 per an agreement, Fort Collins had to revert its original I2P pledge to its General Fund. But, all is not lost yet.

Dr. Prawel said, “The vision has not changed. The difference is where we get the money and having more of a focus on manufacturing.”

He’s working now to get the help of private investors in creating a for-profit center, which would also have a nonprofit segment and focus more on manufacturing R&D, though education will still be part of its mission. The university is a potential partner for this new venture.

YSoft SafeQ Listed in Quocirca Global Print 2025 Study

Intelligent enterprise office solutions provider Y Soft has been validated as a digital transformation leader in the Quocirca Global Print 2025 report, which offers readers a look at the future digital workplace of 2025. The report listed that the Czech company’s YSoft SafeQ enterprise workflow solutions platform is the provider best positioned to help with enterprises’ digital initiatives. Customers identified seven main Digital Transformation trends in the study that they are interested in, including mobile printing, predictive analysis, and security, all of which have been anticipated by Y Soft. The company, which is offering a free executive summary that contains the findings from the Global Print 2025 report, says that YSoft SafeQ will be able to “meet customer’s digital transformation lifecycle needs today and onward.”

“The Global Print 2025 study reveals that the industry faces challenges ahead in addressing inevitable digital disruption,” said Louella Fernandes, Principle Analyst, Quocirca. “Y Soft demonstrates the agility and vision to be at the forefront of this changing industry landscape through its innovative products/solutions that support secure, digital workflows in the mobile, cloud enabled future workplace.”

DediBot’s Flying 3D Printer at TCT Asia 2018

Animation of the Open-ended 3D print (OAM) product.

Last week, Chinese 3D printer manufacturer Hangzhou DediBot Intelligent Technology Co., LTD., better known as DediBot, introduced its conceptual flying 3D printer prototype, dubbed the Fly Elephant, at TCT Asia 2018 as part of the new product release conference. DediBot’s founder, Ying Hua, introduced the company’s three new 3D printers, and discussed 3D printing solutions across the industry’s industrial landscape. The flying 3D printer is an example of the company’s Open-ended Additive Manufacturing (OAM) technology – a UAV carries the print head, which is decked out with a continuous feeding system for the purposes of printing large buildings, space equipment, and undersea structures.

According to a DediBot news release, “The core concept of the Open-ended 3D printing (OAM) displayed at the conference is to make the volume of printing system unrestricted by the prototypes’ volume and the execution unit – printing head – have unconstrained moving rooms, while still maintaining a very high print accuracy, to complete the direct prototyping of large-size 3D printing structures.”

Morf3D Purchases Two EOS 3D Printers, Partially Fulfilling Letter of Intent

Morf3D purchases 10 EOS M 400-4 3D printers. L-R: Andrew Snow, SVP, EOS North America; Ivan Madera, CEO, Morf3D; Glynn Fletcher, President, EOS North America; Dr. Adrian Keppler, CEO, EOS GmbH; and Max Eils, Area Sales Manager – West, EOS North America.

EOS announced this week that 3D printing service provider Morf3D has purchased two of its flagship metal M 400-4 3D printers, which fulfills the first part of Morf3D’s letter of intent to buy a total of 10 over the next several months. Morf3D will use the company’s DMLS 3D printers to fabricate production flight hardware for Honeywell and Boeing, as the technology will allow the company to respond to growing demands for precision, metal 3D printed applications.

“The AM market is maturing and with that comes increased production demands with very stringent requirements. Not all organizations are prepared. We are, and will continue to add systems and processes to leverage the most reliable DMLS technology in the world. Our strong customer relationships coupled with our AM lifecycle strategy have quickly evolved from material qualification to production at-scale. We have been working diligently to put in place a very robust supply-chain with industry partners to exponentially increase our metal AM capacity and services,” Ivan Madera, Morf3D’s CEO, said about the company’s expansive growth strategy.

FabRx 3D Prints Medicine with Sintratec Kits

Fabrizio Fina

A recently published study from the University College London’s School of Pharmacy, in collaboration with UCL spin-off FabRx Ltd., discussed how SLS 3D printing can assist in creating unique dosages of medicine. The researchers have been using an SLS 3D printer from Sintratec for their pharmaceutical research. The Sintratec Kit is a good choice for this research, because of its ability to process temperature-sensitive materials. You can’t adjust the printing parameters on most SLS 3D printers, but the Sintratec Kit makes this possible. FabRx takes advantage of this feature in order to produce its Printlets.

“The Sintratec Kit allows us a whole new approach to the development of new medicines,” said Fabrizio Fina from FabRx. “Following the surprising results, we bought another Sintratec Kit recently!”

DPG Awards Technology Transfer Prize

(L-R): Dr. Udo Weigelt, DPG, Board Member Industry and Science; Martin Hermatschweiler, Nanoscribe; Dr. Jens Fahrenberg, KIT, Innovations Management; Prof. Dr. Martin Wegener, KIT INT; Prof. Dr. Edward Georg Krubasik, DPG Vice President; Prof. Dr. Klaus Richter, DPG, Board Member Scientific Programs, Prizes. [Image: DPG]

The German Physics Association (DPG) has awarded its prestigious Technology Transfer Prize to the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) Institute of Nanotechnology (INT) and KIT spin-off company Nanoscribe GmbH, which generated sales in the double-digit millions last year with its innovative high-resolution laser lithography 3D printers. The research university and Nanoscribe won the award for managing to successfully transfer their research findings in micro 3D printing into products that were “economically successful and useful.”

3D laser lithography consists of tiny structures within a photoresist being focus cured with a computer-controlled laser. The technology was originally developed to fabricate photonic crystals that could be given optical properties, and can now be used to print minute and precise optical micro-lenses, diffractive optics, scaffolds for cell growth in human-like environments, and highly stable materials out of miniature trusses. Multiple applications exist for the technology, like optical cloaking devices, printed micromachines for transporting immotile sperm, and minimally invasive endoscopy surgeries.

The 3Doodler Turns Five!

In September, 3Doodler, the world’s first 3D printing pen and one of the most successful Kickstarter-backed companies ever, celebrated its one millionth 3D printing pen. Now, the technology company owned by WobbleWorks Inc. is celebrating something even bigger – its fifth birthday. With a total of over 1.4 million units sold in over 60 countries, 3Doodler has not taken any outside funding from investors since its two Kickstarter campaigns in 2013 and 2015, the first of which is ranked #76 on Kickstarter for the most money raised. It’s the best-selling 3D printing product of all time, and the company has also maintained profitability, hiring its 40th employee recently and opening offices in New York City and Hong Kong. The pen features family-friendly pricing, and gives anyone who uses it an easy way to wield the power of creativity.

We’ve always known is that there was a demand for a brand like 3Doodler to come in and make the space accessible. What we’ve since discovered is how impactful products like ours can be from a very young age,” said Daniel Cowen, 3Doodler Co-Founder. “Making 3D accessible to education is mission critical going forward. We also could not have imagined how it would be helpful to change the daily lives of the learning impaired.”

3Doodler’s next product announcements will be coming sometime in Q2 and Q3, so stay tuned.

Discuss these stories, and other 3D printing topics, at 3DPrintBoard.com or share your thoughts in the Facebook comments below.


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