3D Systems to Demonstrate Design-to-Manufacturing Products at Inside 3D Printing Conference

Published on April 4, 2014 at 2:42 AM

3D Systems announced today that it is bringing its 3DPRINTING 2.0 capabilities to the second annual Inside 3D Printing Conference and Expo, New York City. 3DS plans to demonstrate its powerful 3D design-to-manufacturing products that are specifically designed for the production floor and the engineer’s desktop.

The company invites attendees to experience the first and only professional full-color plastic 3D printer, try its fab-grade multi-materials 3D printer, and see the output of its latest direct metal 3D printers, all capable of printing fully functional parts and assemblies and available for immediate purchase. The event takes place April 2-4, 2014, at the Javits Convention Center in New York City, NY.

The company is also exhibiting its latest consumer 3D printing products and solutions including the first edible and ceramic 3D printables, the only sub-$1,000 consumer plug & play 3D printer for everyday use by kids and adults and its expanding physical photography consumer and retail devices.

Avi Reichental, President and CEO of 3DS, will deliver the opening keynote on the morning of April 3, 2014, and discuss how 3D printing is transforming and localizing manufacturing, highlighting key trends and sharing advanced manufacturing initiatives.

“We brought to Inside 3D Printing NYC the most powerful set of 3D professional design, manufacturing and consumer products available today, to help attendees understand, embrace, and most importantly, position themselves to take advantage of the abundant opportunities ahead,” said Cathy Lewis, CMO, 3DS. “The exponential performance gains we are delivering, together with new categories such as metals, edibles and ceramics, coupled with performance materials, full-color plastic printing and new physical photography devices, positions our 3DPRINTING 2.0 offering at the heart of the 3D printing growth opportunity.”

3DS is showcasing its new 2014 product line, including advanced manufacturing, design and consumer 3D printers, 3D scanners, 3D modeling software and 3D printed products. The following will be on display:

Industrial-grade direct metal printing – The ProXTM 300 direct metal printer is the only industrial grade direct metal platform that is specifically designed for the most demanding manufacturing floor conditions, delivering high density, metal printed parts from a wide range of materials and to very accurate precision. The ProX series of printers is now shipping and samples of its output can be seen on display at Inside 3D Printing.

High performance simultaneous multi-materials composite printing –The ProJet® 5500X simultaneously prints and fuses together flexible and rigid material composites layer by layer at the pixel level in a variety of colors and shades including opaque, clear, black or white and numerous shades of gray. The ProJet 5500X is now shipping.

First and only full-color plastic 3D printer – The ProJet® 4500 3D printer is the first and only continuous tone, full-color plastic 3D printer and delivers ready-to-use vibrant, durable and flexible plastic parts straight out of the printer in high resolution for a wide range of modeling, functional prototyping and real-use products with superior surface finish. The ProJet 4500 builds with a new class of sustainable VisiJet® C4 Spectrum materials. The ProJet 4500 is now shipping.

Smallest, most economical, precision 3D parts – The ProJet® 1200 is a new $4,900 micro-SLA 3D printer that is ideal for small, precise, detail-rich parts and casting patterns, such as jewelry, electronic components and dental wax-ups. With a footprint smaller than a coffee maker, an all-in-one cartridge and integrated curing cell, it is economical to own, safe to operate anywhere and simple to use. The ProJet 1200 is now shipping and available for direct purchase on 3DSystems.com.

Integrated scan-to-design and inspection tools and print drivers – The company is demonstrating its popular Geomagic Capture ®, the industry’s first integrated scan-based design and inspection solution, as well as its best-selling Geomagic Freeform® design software optimized for industrial designers, jewellers and medical applications.

First-ever edible sugar and chocolate 3D printer – The ChefJetTM sugar and chocolate 3D printer, in the countertop monochrome ChefJet and the full-color ChefJet Pro, are NSF and UL certified and produce edible 3D printed candies and decor. Built from 3DS’ CJP technology, the ChefJet printers are equipped with intuitive, easy to use, chef-friendly Digital Cookbook software and create intricate candies and sweets with a variety of flavor options. The ChefJet line is expected to begin commercial shipment in the second half of 2014.

Stunning ceramic 3D printer – With the CeraJetTM ceramic 3D printer, 3DS is combining the time-honored craft of pottery and ceramics with 3D technology. The CeraJet prints intricate ceramic objects ready for firing and glazing using 3DS’ CJP technology. Ideal for artisans, designers, makers and consumers, the CeraJet line is expected to begin commercial shipping in the second half of 2014. Samples of the CeraJet output will be on display and Inside 3D Printing NYC.

Vibrant, affordable full-color desktop 3D printer – The CubeJetTM full-color desktop 3D printer prints with vibrant, full-color, high-resolution parts for a wide range of modeling and real-use products. Priced under $5,000, the CubeJet is designed with small businesses, independent entrepreneurs, hobbyists and educators in mind, and operates using 3DS’ powerful and compelling ColorJet Printing (CJP) technology. The CubeJet is expected to be available during the second half of 2014.

Professional-quality consumer 3D printing – The CubeProTM series of 3D printers, with the largest print volume in its class and multi-material capability. With three models for single, double or triple print heads for up to three colors, this sub-$5,000, professional-quality, consumer 3D printer series offers a controlled environment print chamber to ensure hi-fidelity, true-to-CAD, quality results. The CubePro is expected to be available during the second quarter of 2014.

First sub-$1,000 consumer, plug & play 3D printer for everyday use – The third generation Cube® 3D printer has faster print speeds, higher 75-micron resolution and a multi-material, dual-color cartridge system that is easier to load than a 2D printer cartridge with higher speed WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, a permanently levelled print pad and seamless integration with the new Cubify® mobile app to make 3D printing easier than ever before. The Cube is expected to commence shipment during the second quarter of 2014.

Wireless physical photography – Expected to commence shipping during the second quarter of 2014, 3DS will preview its iSenseTM 3D scanner for iPads and will demonstrate its already available, handheld SenseTM 3D scanner for PC and Mac with seamless printing optimization. Ideal for physical photography, the Sense is priced at $399 and iSense at $499, including software, and can scan anything from six inches to ten feet in dimension.

Perceptual 3D mouse – Attendees can use the first-ever haptic-based consumer 3D mouse, the TouchTM, for intuitive 3D sculpting and design. The Touch features instant force feedback that mimics the sensation of physical sculpting, and is compatible with 3DS’ Cubify® SculptTM software, providing a powerful virtual design experience. Priced at $499 with software, the Touch is expected to be ready for commercial shipment during the second quarter of 2014.

Source: http://www.azom.com/news.aspx?newsID=40728

Novel Method Improves Smoldering Test for Upholstered Furniture

Published on April 2, 2014 at 4:17 AM

American University chemistry researchers and scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology discovered a way to improve a test that gauges how well upholstered furniture can resist smoldering combustion to delay the possible onset of fire. The research results are available online in the scientific journal, Polymer Degradation and Stability.
In the United States, fires in which upholstered furniture is the first item ignited account for about 6,700 home fires annually and result in 480 deaths, according to the National Fire Protection Association. These fires can be started from an open-flame source, such as a candle, or from a smoldering source, such as a lit cigarette or incense.

In the smoldering test, two foam pieces about two-inches thick are covered with fabric and placed in a wooden frame to replicate a small-scale version of seat and back cushions. It mimics a scenario where furniture foam sits on a non-air-permeable substrate (e.g. the wooden frame). A cigarette (certified to burn consistently) is placed in the frame’s crevice. To pass the test, the lit cigarette should not cause sustained smoldering of the fabric or the underlying foam.

Household furniture typically includes open wooden frames and springs, which enhance air flow through foam and increase the propensity for smoldering. The researchers changed the frame design to allow for air flow by including wire mesh to separate the foam pieces from the wooden frame. Their design better represented real furniture and provided a more realistic simulation of smoldering. In the process, they also identified foams that could be used for better smoldering consistency.

“Our goal is to help regulators develop a more realistic smoldering test. Our results show that the current test can severely underestimate smoldering propensity in real furniture,” said AU Assistant Professor and NIST researcher Mauro Zammarano. “We recommend that regulators who administer the test consider creating gaps in the frame design to increase air flow.”

The finding of the improved smoldering test came about as AU Chemistry Assistant Professor Doug Fox, Zammarano and their colleagues work to design non-toxic “green” flame retardants. The team focuses on molecular chemistry research using ingredients from natural materials such as cellulose. Cellulose, the most abundant polymer on Earth, is an effective reinforcing fiber for polymer composites, but it is extremely flammable. Fox’s team modifies cellulose, often with phosphates or silicon-containing compounds. Modified cellulose acts as a flame retardant and a reinforcing phase, so that when blended with plastics, the fire resistance of the composite increases without weakening, as is often the case with other flame retardants.

Effective flame retardants in furniture delay time for ignition and the spread of flames, and the researchers envision a future where industry embraces green flame retardants. Currently, there are few options for affordable flame retardants that are effective, and the ones available are increasingly unpopular because of potential toxicity issues. In recent years, scientific studies have linked exposure to flame retardant chemicals in furniture with negative health effects in people. Because of the concerns, last year lawmakers in California voted for a change to the state’s nearly 40-year-old flammability standards. Lawmakers ended the requirement for an open-flame test for filling materials in upholstered furniture. (The open-flame test, unlike the smoldering test, often required the use of flame retardants to pass.)

California’s regulations are key because many foam manufacturers follow them for the entire U.S market rather than make separate products for California. The end of the open-flame test, however, hasn’t meant all manufacturers have ended the use of flame retardants, which is why Fox’s group pushes on to create a green solution.

“While manufacturers are no longer required to use flame retardants, some in the furniture industry still place them in foam due to concerns over potential lawsuits, possible reinstatement of open flame tests, or to satisfy the needs of European or commercial products, which still require a level of flammability reduction,” Fox said.

The role of flame retardants in fire safety is seen in recent, high-profile fires. The 2003 Rhode Island nightclub fire that killed 100 people started when pyrotechnics ignited soundproofing material. When NIST scientists conducted an experiment using pyrotechnics to ignite soundproofing material containing flame retardants, the soundproofing material did not catch fire. In the airline crash of Asiana flight 214 in July 2013 in San Francisco, people survived in part because flame retardants delayed the time it took for the plane to catch on fire, providing people minutes, not seconds, to escape, Fox added.

While Fox and his team focus on creating green flame retardants used in furniture, the research could have wider industry applications. In addition to furniture, flame retardants are used in products that must meet flammability standards, including electronics, insulation and textiles.

Source: http://www.azom.com/news.aspx?newsID=40701

Altair Supports Aerospace Innovation with HyperWorks’

TROY, Mich., April 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/

The latest version of HyperWorks, to be highlighted at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2014 April 8-10 (Altair booth 6D60), represents the most advanced evolution of computer-aided engineering (CAE) technology applicable to the aerospace industry. HyperWorks provides a comprehensive suite of tools for every phase of aircraft innovation, from initial concept generation through the entire product lifecycle.

Aircraft manufacturers are using the suite for weight reduction and design with composites; modern structural modeling and automated design processes; and stress, mechanism and vulnerability simulation. Software tools in the integrated HyperWorks suite are advancing the ways in which aircraft are designed, accelerating the adoption of advanced materials, such as laminated composites, to meet industry goals of reducing the weight of components and structures for greater fuel efficiency and passenger comfort.

“While composites are a major focal point for HyperWorks and the aviation industry, our product suite offers much more,” said Shan Nageswaran, Senior Director, Altair HyperWorks for Aerospace. “From automated meshing to groundbreaking optimization tools and a wide range of easily accessed partner applications, HyperWorks is helping the aerospace industry reach new heights in time efficiency, cost reduction and quality improvement all while meeting the strictest safety and performance requirements.”

Design with Composites and Weight Reduction

For composites, HyperMesh saves significant time with its modeling process. Composites data may be read from the computer-aided design (CAD) model, with ply shapes and parameters comprehended and effortlessly mapped onto elements. Its ply-based modeling approach is more intuitive and efficient than the conventional zone-based approach, matching the physical creation of composites more closely. HyperMesh also has the ability to convert from ply to zone-based modeling for solvers that do not natively support ply-based modeling.

One of the most widely used post-processing tools globally, HyperView provides layer-based post-processing for composites, yielding results for both individual layers and the aggregation of layers and identifying the maximum contributing layer. The module also includes predefined criteria, including well-known industry standard composite failure theories, and allows for invoking in-house codes for further manipulation of these results.

OptiStruct is a state-of-the-art solver with non-linear capabilities for ply-based modeling. It offers size optimization for dimensioning of structural components, as well as topology optimization to substantially reduce weight by determining the ideal material distribution. OptiStruct simplifies the complexity of composite modeling, considering hundreds of load cases simultaneously to recommend the best approach. Its three-phase methodology first employs free-size optimization to find the location for reinforcements based on the ply angle. Then, size optimization indicates the number of plies of a particular orientation that are needed. Finally, shuffling optimization defines which order is optimal for the results previously generated.

Many additional tools of exceptional importance to the aerospace industry can be accessed through the Altair Partner Alliance (APA), which enables HyperWorks users to call on third-party software as needed at no additional cost. For example, beyond the comprehensive HyperWorks suite itself, nine different software tools for designing and analyzing composites are available through the APA. These partner products add value to the preliminary design of composites, detailed investigations of joints and other areas and micromechanics to investigate on a microscopic level the individual constituents of composites. Many other areas of the aerospace industry are addressed through the APA as well, including electromagnetic analysis, casting simulation, thermal analysis, computational fluid dynamics analysis and durability analysis, among others.

Modern Structural Modeling and Automated Design Processes

HyperMesh offers proficiency in geometry editing and manipulation to automatically organize geometry for meshing and has helped aerospace developers gain major time savings. Its new aerospace profile contains tools targeted especially for the aerospace industry. The HyperView result math module is a tool which enables users to conduct analysis with their results. An average may be calculated between two stress results, for example, or a more sophisticated math function employed from the extensive library included in HyperView to derive a new result from the existing results. Users may also add their own libraries or invoke scripts and programs to be involved in the result math, such as calculating a value which then is used in the formula applied to the results. Results can be mapped back and forth to Excel to take advantage of many stress analysis tools that already exist in spreadsheets. HyperView operates with the most commonly employed solvers and can publish results in PowerPoint with just a few mouse clicks, dramatically cutting the time required for reporting.

Source: http://www.broadwayworld.com/bwwgeeks/article/Altair-Supports-Aerospace-Innovation-with-HyperWorks-20140402#.U0F_pvmSwUg

Small R&D project in West Virginia has big implications for civil works projects worldwide

EAST LYNN, W. Va.- When an inspection revealed corrosion-damaged piles weakened the utility of a 40-year-old bridge linking State Route 37 to a popular recreation site, authorities’ first concerns were for public safety. Visitors who long-enjoyed camping, boating, fishing, hiking and picnicking at the recreation site were inconvenienced by the safeguards implemented. Safeguards included reducing traffic on the bridge to one lane with two-way traffic, a speed limit of 10 miles per hour and a vehicle weight limit of six tons. In the deteriorating bridge, John Clarkson, a licensed professional engineer with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Huntington District did not see an inconvenience, but rather an exciting opportunity. Clarkson’s structural engineering knowledge prompted him to explore using composites science to repair the bridge. Thanks to recent developments in composites technology and collaboration among USACE, West Virginia University, the National Science Foundation and Federal Highway Administration, the East Fork Bridge rehabilitation was completed this week, just in time for the 2014 recreation season.

“This project afforded USACE the opportunity to fix the bridge at one third the cost of traditional methods,” said Clarkson. “We funded research and development that can now be applied to other civil works projects globablly and partnered with world-renowned experts and graduate students from West Virginia University,” said Clarkson.

Not too shabby for a beloved little bridge in rural West Virginia.

Students from the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources at WVU and leading composites expert, Dr. Hota V. GangaRao P.E., of the university’s Constructed Facilities Center, as well as Rich Lampo, a materials engineer from the USACE Construction Engineering Research Laboratory, investigated and identified materials, including fibers, glass and glues, which could be used to develop a long-lasting, lower-cost solution to the bridge’s corroded piles problem.

“Some of the advantages to using composites beyond the substantial cost savings compared to more traditional methods include shorter construction schedules and longer-lasting repairs with less-maintenance required,” said Lampo.

Why not use composites in all civil works projects then? USACE is in the rigorous process of evaluating and validating the use of composites in various civil works projects, explained Lampo.

In a process similar to pilot programming, USACE is implementing composites, including fiber-reinforced polymers, in a few civil works projects nationwide as part of its ongoing R&D activities.
The rehabilitated East Fork Bridge is equipped with instrumentation that will allow researchers to collect data about the bridge’s use and wear.

“There are all kinds of applications for composites being used in structures, but there is some reluctance to use them with more frequency because we don’t have complete standards and specifications yet,” explained Lampo. “Once that guidance is in place, using composites in civil works projects will likely be much more commonplace.”

Praveen Majjigapu, 26, a graduate researcher and doctoral student at WVU who worked on the East Fork Bridge rehabilitation, said he is excited about what composites can do to improve the safety and utility of structures while lowering construction costs in the U.S. and abroad. A native of Uttar Pradesh, India, Majjigapu cited the 2001 earthquake in Gujarat, India, which killed approximately 25,000 people, destroyed nearly 400,000 structures and left nearly a million people homeless, as one of the reasons he chose to become a structural engineer. “We can build safer structures that are resistant to catastrophic failures, said Majjigapu. “We can reduce risks, reduce suffering and save lives.”

Small R&D rehabilitation projects like the East Fork Bridge repairs may have big implications for civil works projects everywhere.

Source: http://www.dvidshub.net/news/123586/small-rd-project-west-virginia-has-big-implications-civil-works-projects-worldwide#.Uzvj-_mSwUg