3D Printing Research

Australian research yields world’s first 3D printed stem cell harvester

June 23, 2022 |

Researchers from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), together with biotech firm Regeneus, have created what they claim is the world’s first 3D printed microfluidic device capable of harvesting stem cells. Bleeding-edge stem cell therapies are a promising way to treat a whole plethora of ailments, including arthritis, diabetes, and potentially even cancer. Stem cells work by differentiating into specialized cells, meaning they can be used to replace damaged cells around the human body. Unfortunately, harvesting and processing stem cells from donors is currently very time, cost, and labor intensive due to limitations in biotechnology. The 3D printed microfluidic device is designed to harvest stem cells from bioreactors, offering a scalable method of processing stem cells without the associated costs. Professor Majid Warkiani, the UTS biomedical engineer leading the research, said, “Our cutting-edge technology, which uses 3D printing and microfluidics to integrate a number of production steps into one device…    read more 

UCLA researchers 3D print entire microrobots in a single pass

June 20, 2022 |

A team of researchers from UCLA has developed a new method of 3D printing entire robots in one go. The approach relies on specially developed active metamaterials (multi-functional materials) that serve as both the mechanical and electronic systems that make up a robot. These metamaterials can be 3D printed to form tiny ‘meta-bots’ that can crawl, jump, sense their surroundings, and even make decisions on what to do next based on programmed commands. Since the internal structural, movement, and sensing components are all printed at once, all that’s needed to bring them to life is a small external battery. “We envision that this design and printing methodology of smart robotic materials will help realize a class of autonomous materials that could replace the current complex assembly process for making a robot,” said Xiaoyu Zheng, principal investigator of the study. “With complex motions, multiple modes of sensing and programmable decision-making abilities…    read more 

Researchers 3D print single crystal nickel using SLM technology

June 17, 2022 |

A team of Japan-based researchers is investigating the use of selective laser melting (SLM) technology to 3D print single crystal structures made of pure nickel (Ni). There’s been a growing demand for 3D printed Ni-based superalloys such as Inconel over the years. These high-temperature metals are often characterized by their excellent mechanical properties, corrosion resistance, and creep resistance, commonly operating in the 500°C+ temperature range. As such, they’re a go-to in the aerospace sector where they’re used to fabricate jet engine components like turbine blades. Single crystal turbine blades are capable of operating at much higher temperatures than their crystalline counterparts, but the additive manufacturing of Ni-based single crystal superalloys has proven difficult thus far. While they can be processed via electron beam melting (EBM), the use of laser-based technologies like SLM usually requires the use of a single crystal seed (build plate). Now, the team from Japan’s National Institute…    read more 

The State of Resin 3D Printing: 2022 Survey Results

June 14, 2022 |

The results of the State of Resin 3D Printing survey are in. Working with Henkel, we asked readers a range of questions, from the applications and technology they are working with to levels of satisfaction with materials and the most influential factors on a purchase decision. Alongside the survey, we also conducted a series of interviews with experts in the resin 3D printing world. You can read the series here.  About the data The survey was conducted in March 2022, and the final sample size was 198. Almost a quarter of responders (22%) who use 3D printing said they were familiar with Henkel’s Loctite resin portfolio. For this group who were not currently using Loctite 3D printing materials, nearly half (49%) said they would consider using them in the future. The users of resin 3D printing classified themselves according to their usage of the technology at the following levels: Low…    read more 

Researchers recycle 3D printing waste to develop carbon fiber-reinforced PLA

June 8, 2022 |

Researchers from the United Arab Emirates University are exploring the development of recycled composite materials using leftover 3D printed PLA and carbon fiber waste. Plastic consumption has been on the rise since its invention over a century ago, resulting in polluting waste that poses a challenge for both humanity and the rest of Earth’s ecosystem. In recent years especially, there’s been a push towards ‘green initiatives’ that work to realize a more sustainable society. One such initiative is recycling, whereby polymers like 3D printed PLA waste are repurposed for new applications. Similarly, composite materials have also seen increased demand over the years, with carbon fiber reinforcements having applications in both conventional manufacturing and 3D printing. Much like polymers, the widespread use of carbon fibers in industries such as automotive and aerospace is fueling an ever-worsening waste issue. Taking the opportunity to strike two birds with one stone, the UAE researchers…    read more 

Concordia researchers develop ‘game-changing’ ultrasound 3D printing technology

June 2, 2022 |

Researchers from Concordia University have developed a novel direct sound printing (DSP) technique that leverages ultrasound waves to fabricate complex and precise objects.  The team has published a paper describing the technology, which works by using sound waves to create sonochemical reactions in minuscule cavities to produce pre-designed complex geometries that cannot be achieved with existing techniques.  “Ultrasonic frequencies are already being used in destructive procedures like laser ablation of tissues and tumors,” said Muthukumaran Packirisamy, a Professor in Concordia’s Department of Mechanical, Industrial and Aerospace Engineering. “We wanted to use them to create something.” Ultrasonic 3D printing The use of ultrasound in microparticle manipulation is not a new concept, with ultrasonic waves having proven to be a useful tool across multiple areas of 3D printing in the past.  The last few years have seen researchers from the University of Bath and the University of Bristol develop their Sonolithography bioprinting…    read more 

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