3D printing, or additive manufacturing to be ‘proper’ about it gets more innovative and exciting by the minute. It sure seems that way for sure! So! While the new year is embryonic here’s a gallop across the globe and through 5 exciting 3D developments that SED HQ is in awe of! Sit back and hold tight!
1. Renewable and sustainable developments
Anyone of a certain age may well recall being force fed castor oil as a child. Mothers did this when nature needed a little help to move things on their way. If you get my meaning. I remember this well. Yuk! Nasty stuff.
Anyway! Renewable castor oil is now getting a new lease of life as the source of materials set to bridge the gap between performance and sustainability in the making of nylon printing powder.
The 3D printing service Sculpteo, headquarted in Paris, in conjunction with a division of BASF (remember those letters on VHS tapes?) are set to launch four new sustainable and bio-sourced 3D printing materials.
What would Wallace Carothers, the inventor of nylon back in the 1930s, have made of that we cry?
2. The quirky developments
Now we go from castor oil to Cobra Golf’s partnership with HP – the makers of printers and printing consumables, not the sauce.
Keen to elevate the game of golf, Cobra Golf have worked with HP and advanced manufacturing technologies to produce the King Supersport-35 putter. This state-of-the art club features, so we’re told, a fully 3D printed metal body with an intricate lattice structure. The purpose of all that being to optimize weight distribution and deliver the best possible MOI (moment of inertia) in a blade shape.
Sounds amazing doesn’t it? SED suspects though that it can’t guarantee you’ll get the ball in the hole.
3. The health developments
Now Mark Twain is famous for his comment about golf being a good walk spoiled. The truth of that depends on your point of view for sure. But the fact remains that golf involves a lot of walking and walking is good for your health. And talking of health makes a nice segue – and we love a segue – into microbots delivering drugs.
In the future, the scientists believe that medics will be able to inject their biocompatible microbots into patients during surgical procedures. What’s more, they have an application for remote treatment of illnesses.
4. Cost savings in education
Thanks to 3D printed, open source, learning aids, teachers could save a heap of their costs – according to researchers from Michigan Technological University.
During research into the economical viability of 3D classroom printing, researchers found that the 38 x 3D printable learning aids they evaluated, saved the educational community over a million dollars. There’s strong evidence then that 3D printing of open-source learning aid designs has the potential to offer a meaningful return on investment.
5. The food developments
Ah – now we come to number 5 in our list of five exciting 3D developments. And it’s one of our favourite topics. Food glorious food! And this one links to health too – at least to feeding cancer patients.
A big challenge for those caring for people with cancer is warding off the risk of malnutrition. For cancer treatments often cause such adverse side effects as taste loss, bad taste in mouth, metallic taste in mouth, oral sores and vomiting and appetite loss. All of which will have a knock-on effect on daily food intake.
At present, the clinical nutrition market offers a range of nutrition support products. And they’re fine so far as they go. But what they don’t do is address either the pleasure of eating or a patient’s food preferences. It’s easy to see the negative effect on their quality of life.
But the ONCOFOOD project proposes to design and develop new and innovative food solutions for cancer patients. Their proposals consider two things:
a. Their nutritional needs
b. Also their sensory alterations thus promoting the pleasure of eating and the prevention of malnutrition.
Scientists are set to develop a range of food solutions which they’ll test on cancer patients. Further, ground-breaking food technologies such as 3D printing will give new food solutions to cancer patients either experiencing dysphagia or need a soft hospital diet.
Sensory scientists at the University of Reading are leading the ONCOFOOD project in collaboration with the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust and other European partners.
So there you have it. Our quick round-up of a mere 5 exciting 3D developments to keep an eye out for in 2021.
Should you want to dig a little deeper into the wonders of additive marketing then we commend you to our blog on the future of 3D printing.
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