Spare parts stored digitally & 3D printed when needed, a competitive advantage (Video)

Spare parts stored digitally & 3D printed when needed, a competitive advantage

Five percent of spare parts could currently be stored in digital warehouses. This would make parts more quickly and easily available, while creating considerable cost savings. Digitalisation will also enable individual customisation and an increase in the intelligence of parts. 

A two-year project involving companies, and led by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Aalto University, investigated how businesses can gain a competitive advantage from digital spare parts.

Spare parts and all of the related information can be stored and transferred digitally. Availability increases when a new spare part can be 3D-printed according to need, close to the end user.

“Industry now has every opportunity to boost business by making spare parts into a focus area of development. Around five percent of parts can currently be manufactured digitally, according to need. 3D printing technology has reached the stage where high-quality manufacturing is possible,” says Sini Metsä-Kortelainen, VTT’s project manager for the project. Continue reading “Spare parts stored digitally & 3D printed when needed, a competitive advantage (Video)”

Powered by a chemical reaction controlled by microfluidics, 3D-printed ‘octobot’ has no electronics (Video)

Octobot is the first autonomous, entirely soft robot. Powered by a chemical reaction controlled by microfluidics, 3D-printed ‘octobot’ has no electronics.

A team of Harvard University researchers with expertise in 3D printing, mechanical engineering, and microfluidics has demonstrated the first autonomous, untethered, entirely soft robot. This small, 3D-printed robot — nicknamed the octobot — could pave the way for a new generation of completely soft, autonomous machines. Continue reading “Powered by a chemical reaction controlled by microfluidics, 3D-printed ‘octobot’ has no electronics (Video)”

Expansion of 3D printing operations planned by UPS

Expansion of 3D printing operations planned by UPS (United Parcel Service). They plan to expand its 3D printing service to Asia and Europe, the U.S. shipping company has told Reuters, in a bid to fully embrace and get ahead of a trend that threatens to eat away a small but lucrative part of its business.

Aside from its main package delivery service, United Parcel Service gets an undisclosed portion of its revenue from storing and shipping parts for manufactures. If those customers were to switch to 3D printing their own parts, that business would face a drastic reduction. Continue reading “Expansion of 3D printing operations planned by UPS”

3D Printed Ceramics Using Sound Waves, Created by Dutch Designers (Video)

Olivier van Herpt, like many artists, found himself dissatisfied with the artistic capabilities of traditional 3D printers and 3D printing materials.

“When I first started researching 3D printing the technology was an exciting and interesting one,” the Dutch sculptor says. “But, the desktop 3D printers on offer were unable to produce things at a human scale. Large and medium scale functional design objects that we use such as bowls, plates & decorative objects could not be made. The objects made with desktop 3D printers were also low in heat resistance and could not be food safe. Industrial 3D printers could make food safe objects for everyday use but these would be too costly to produce.” Continue reading “3D Printed Ceramics Using Sound Waves, Created by Dutch Designers (Video)”

3D printing highlights of Dutch Design Week 2015

Between Saturday 17th and Sunday 25th October, Eindhoven welcomed visitors from all over the world for Dutch Design Week 2015. Being Netherlands-based ourselves, we could hardly wait to check out the convention, and set off for the North Brabant city to find the country’s best 3D printed design offerings. The following is a list, in no particular order, of some of the most interesting 3D printing projects on display at Dutch Design Week 2015. Continue reading “3D printing highlights of Dutch Design Week 2015”

3D Printed Italian Racing Bicycle Built by Pininfarina, De Rosa

At 13 years old just after the war in 1947, Ugo De Rosa was crazy about bicycles. He reveled in reviewing the feats of the great road racers Bartali and Coppi, and once his studies were complete for the day, he headed to Filippo Fasci’s workshop where he dreamed of building himself a bike and becoming a champion himself. By age 18, he’d set up his own business building those bicycles of his dreams.  Continue reading “3D Printed Italian Racing Bicycle Built by Pininfarina, De Rosa”