3D Printing News Briefs, June 23, 2021: Teton Simulation, A.D.A.M., ASTM & NSERC HI-AM, America Makes, nScrypt & Sciperio, Repair3D, Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, ETH Zürich, & Koç University


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We’re starting off with business in today’s 3D Printing News Briefs, as Teton Simulation has appointed a new Channel Strategy Advisor and A.D.A.M. has a new Chief Medical Officer. ASTM International signed an MoU with the NSERC HI-AM Network, and America Makes issued a new Project Call, as well as a call for topics. Moving on, nScrypt is printing curved phased array antenna for the USAF, and several companies are teaming up to recycle plastic into 3D printing filament. Finally, a team of researchers working on soft micromachines has published a paper on their work.

Teton Simulation Appoints Advisor for Channel Strategy

Sander Tuijt

Teton Simulation, which develops 3D printing simulation software products, announced that it has appointed additive manufacturing executive Sander Tuijt as its Advisor for Channel Strategy. In his new role, effective immediately, Tuijt will help with channel build-up and management as the company continues to accelerate and extend its Go to Market and keep working towards long-term commercial success. Before Teton, he served as Senior Vice President of Market Development for Ultimaker, and helped the company move into a top global position in the AM industry by leading the strategy, implementation, and expansion of its B2B and go-to-market approaches and building up a worldwide distribution and sales partner network.

Technology that solves complex problems and really makes life simpler is inspiring. This belief, along with working with great people and companies, drove us when during the time at Ultimaker together we built the world’s first globe-spanning partner network for affordable 3D Printer solutions,” Tuijt said.

It’s that same belief that deeply motivates me to today commit to Teton Simulation’s growth. Teton is bringing technology to market that solves the incredibly difficult problem of reducing design iterations – not only shortening time to market and maximizing business outcomes but at the same time improving print quality and material selection further unlocking applications.

For me, Teton is not just another piece of the puzzle, Teton brings 3D printing to a whole new level. Finally, 3D printing is truly going to meet professional standards, not only in parts’ quality but also in speed of user adoption and ease of use.

Given the opportunities, I’m delighted to guide and mobilize the channel that will make Teton Simulation Software available to anybody who’s serious about 3D Printing in the industry.”

A.D.A.M. Appoints New Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Andrew Pedtke

Biotechnology startup A.D.A.M., which stands for Advanced Development of Additive Manufacturing, is developing an on-demand personalized biopolymer and bioceramic implant manufacturing infrastructure, along with several related services, and announced that Dr. Andrew Pedtke, a practicing orthopedic surgeon, entrepreneur, and venture investor, has joined the team as its Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Pedtke, also a co-founder of prosthetic technology company LIM Innovations, has a unique mix of expertise in both the medical and business fields that will make him an asset to A.D.A.M., especially as they work to close the current ongoing investment round. In his new role, Dr. Pedtke will be responsible for developing and executing the startup’s go-to-market strategy, as well as leading the onboarding of insurance companies, orthopedic distributors, and hospitals.

“It is an exciting moment in the company’s development, and we are looking forward to working with such an accomplished professional,” the company’s CEO, Denys Gurak, said in an email.

ASTM International Signs MoU with NSERC HI-AM Network

In order to support the continued development of additive manufacturing standards, Canadian NSERC Network for Holistic Innovation in Additive Manufacturing (HI-AM), which addresses challenges that prevent industrial adoption of metal AM, and global standards organization ASTM International have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in support of closer cooperation between the two. The MoU, which was announced by ASTM’s VP of Global Business Development and Innovation Strategy Brian Meincke and Hi-AM’s Chairman of the Board Ralph Resnick at the fourth annual HI-AM Conference, will make it possible for the two organizations to have better collaboration on activities, encourage more industry participation from Canada in the AM standards development process, and promote the exchange of information on topics of interest. For instance, work item WK76983 is focused on best practices for in-situ defect detection, while work item WK77008 looks at benchmarking of powder bed density measurement.

“One of our core values has been identifying partnerships with organizations that can support acceleration of standards development. We are excited to work closely with the HI-AM Network and hope this partnership will advance and facilitate innovative global additive manufacturing standardizations,” Meincke stated.

America Makes: Open Project Call, RIC Call for Topics

Ohio-based America Makes recently announced a new Open Project Call (OPC) worth a total of $1.6 million in funding from the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Manufacturing and Industrial Base Technology Division. The OPC is focused on developing and deploying cost-effective, energy-efficient AM technologies to meet defense and/or commercial needs, with a goal of supporting five key technical topics—Design, Material, Process, AM Genome and Value Chain—from the organization’s AM Technology Roadmap. This OPC requires a cost share of at least 50% match from non-Federal funding sources, and all participants must be members of America Makes. Registration is required, and the submission deadline is before 5 pm EDT on Friday, July 2nd, 2021, with an anticipated awards announcement of Tuesday, August 3rd, 2021.

“This Open Project Call represents a vast array of topics and opportunities to benefit our membership and our industry at large. As our first OPC of 2021, we are thrilled with the efforts of our Roadmap Advisory and Working Groups for their contributions in identifying, prioritizing, and developing these technology and education and workforce development topics. We also appreciate the provided insightful membership input that helped to further enhance this OPC,” said Brandon D. Ribic, Ph.D., America Makes Technology Director. “I look forward to receiving the quality and innovative responses that we have come to expect from our membership community.”

Additionally, America Makes announced a call for topics for its next Rapid Innovation Call (RIC) before 5 pm EDT July 2nd, with the intention of officially launching an RIC and announcing the topics in early August. The RIC project model gives America Makes a framework to quickly adapt and pivot to changing supply chain challenges, thanks to direct input from its members and/or government stakeholders.

nScrypt 3D Prints Curved Phased Array Antenna for USAF

Speaking of the AFRL, nScrypt announced that its research arm, Sciperio, used its Factory in a Tool (FiT) 3D manufacturing system to 3D print a phased antenna array on a curved surface with the laboratory’s Sensors Directorate and subcontractor University of South Florida. A phased array antenna is a collection of antenna elements that, by controlling the phase of each individual element’s signal, can aim the signal instead of randomly radiating it out. Since this type of antenna allows for more secure communications, it’s pretty important for military communications, and Sciperio, which developed the first fully 3D printed phased array antenna for the USAF back in 2016, has been continuing its work to conform 3D printed antennas to complex surfaces.

“Printing complex electronics is always challenging. Doing so on a curved surface extends that challenge,” explained nScrypt and Sciperio CEO Ken Church. “The nScrypt and Sciperio teams have been printing electronics for more than 20 years and their recent prints of complex electrically functional curved structures demonstrate the power of 3D manufacturing for 3D printed electronics.  High value functional electronics demand precision, material performance and multiple material options, and multiple manufacturing processes, all performing in three dimensions, which is our sweet spot.”

Project to 3D Print Recycled Plastic

Derived from fossil fuels, plastic is a vital part of modern life but a lack of recycling and proper disposal has tainted its production, use and consumption. Credit: Marc Newberry / Unsplash

The UN Environment Program says that about 60% of the 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic humans have produced since the 1950s either winds up in a landfill or out in the world, which is not great for the environment. In order to reduce this high amount of waste, companies and governments need new technologies for recycling and repairing them, as plastics are made up of polymeric synthetic and semi-synthetic materials with different characteristics and compositions—meaning no one way to reuse and recycle all kinds. The EU’s Horizon 2020 Repair3D project is working to find new uses for “recycled thermoplastics and carbon fibres valorised from carbon-fibre reinforced polymers (CFRPs).” In the first stage of the project, researchers identified different plastic and CPRF waste streams from various industries, and worked to recycle the materials into AM pellets or filaments. Next is to combine the recycled plastics with carbon fibers and other nanoparticles for added functionalities, and Repair3D is working with several large industry partners to 3D print items from the recycled plastic like ski boots, car parts, and wearable electronics, though the end products must also be recyclable.

Repair3D’s scientific coordinator Costas Charitidis, a professor at the National Technical University of Athens, said, “3D printing is at the heart of Repair3D.

“Today recycling (of CFRPs) is very expensive. So we have a huge challenge to make recycling more cost effective.”

Magnetic Soft Micromachines of Linked Microactuators

Soft micromachine fabrication strategy. (A) Fabrication process schematics of soft micromachines using a two-photon polymerization (3D microprinting) system with an integrated electromagnetic coil setup. Microactuators (soft magnetic, monodisperse, and spherical Janus microparticles) are manipulated magnetically to reach a desired position and orientation and fixed there temporarily using 3D microprinting. Soft and rigid materials can be 3D-printed on a fixed microactuator to link it with other fixed microactuators. (B) Schematic details of the fabrication process for an example two-particle chain: (i) The first microactuator is positioned to a specific location by surface rolling. (ii) The microactuator’s orientation is controlled by a rotating magnetic field H. (iii) The oriented microactuator is anchored temporarily on the glass substrate. (iv) A ring-shaped holding structure is 3D-printed to be able to bond other 3D-printed microstructures at the microactuator’s metallic site. The above four steps are repeated for the second microactuator. (v) A soft (i.e., gelatin hydrogel) or rigid link between the microactuators is 3D-printed. (vi) The final soft micromachine is released (with laser assistance) from the glass substrate by soaking it in deionized (DI) water. Then, the released device is actuated by external magnetic fields generated by the electromagnetic coils in the given operation space.

Magnetic soft machines with programmable shape morphing capabilities under externally applied magnetic fields could help in developing new design strategies for mechanical metamaterials, soft robots, minimally invasive medical devices, and lab/organ-on-a-chip devices, because they are wireless, interact gently with their environment, feature a large design space for magnetic programming, and respond quickly to external magnetic fields. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to control 2D or 3D position and magnetic orientation of the individual micromagnets, which has limited the development of microscale magnetic soft machines. A team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, ETH Zürich, and Koç University published a paper, “Magnetic soft micromachines made of linked microactuator networks,” about their innovative assembly-based fabrication strategy, which uses electromagnetic steering control to position and orient individual microactuators, and two-photon polymerization (2PP) 3D printing to form links between the microactuators.

The abstract states, “Soft untethered micromachines with overall sizes less than 100 μm enable diverse programmed shape transformations and functions for future biomedical and organ-on-a-chip applications. However, fabrication of such machines has been hampered by the lack of control of microactuator’s programmability. To address such challenge, we use two-photon polymerization to selectively link Janus microparticle-based magnetic microactuators by three-dimensional (3D) printing of soft or rigid polymer microstructures or links. Sequentially, we position each microactuator at a desired location by surface rolling and rotation to a desired position and orientation by applying magnetic field–based torques, and then 3D printing soft or rigid links to connect with other temporarily fixed microactuators. The linked 2D microactuator networks exhibit programmed 2D and 3D shape transformations, and untethered limbless and limbed micromachine prototypes exhibit various robotic gaits for surface locomotion. The fabrication strategy presented here can enable soft micromachine designs and applications at the cellular scales.”

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