Monthly Archives: January 2012

3D Printing park benches of a different kind!


Here is some innovative research being done with 3D printing technology at U. Cal Berkeley.  Prof. Ronald Rael has developed a new process that enables the printing of production-ready building components. Following is his guest blog.

Printing innovative, one-of-a-kind building components that are generated quickly and economically to produce large scale -objects, is the current research of Ronald Rael, Assistant Professor of Architecture at the University of California, Berkeley and founding partner of Rael San Fratello Architects. They have developed a cement-based simulant and a new process that, for the first time, employs conventional rapid prototyping hardware to create strong and durable building components that cost far less than conventional 3d printing materials—up to 90% less than comparable printing materials.

The material can also reach strengths of up to 4,700psi in compression, which is a similar strength of concrete. This advancement in material output from digital modeling software ushers in a new era in building materials, and a new synthesis of design and production.


The SeatSlug, a biomorphic interpretation of a bench, demonstrates how this new digital output generates end-product structural building components directly from 3D CAD software.  It is constructed of 230 unique rapid-manufactured components.

New SLA Material, looks like an injection moulded part!

3D printed SLA model


I must admit when I first saw the Accura Xtreme Plastic material, I didn’t realise it was built on an SLA machine.  I actually thought it was an injection moulded part.  It wasn’t until closer inspection, because it hadn’t been polished, that I could see the build lines.

It feels nice in your hands and it’s very strong, I recommend it for assemblies, fit and form and functional tests.  It has a grey appearance – very similar to paint primer grey. 

If you would like to see a sample, contact our sales team


Printing a Bike using SLS Technology

EADS, the European aerospace and defense group, has unveiled the world’s first bike “grown” from powder, allowing complete sections to be built as one piece.

Known as the “Airbike,” it is made of nylon but strong enough to replace steel and requires no conventional maintenance or assembly. It can be tailoured made by modifiying the 3D CAD file and manufactured in days.

3D Printing Almost mainstream


Computerworld —  Professional solid modeling tools such as AutoCAD and SolidWorks and 3-D printer kits costing less than $1,500 are making 3-D printing cost-effective and time-saving, says Computerworld in a comprehensive overview.

Richard Smith used a consumer-grade 3D “plastic jet printer” (The RapMan) and a computer-aided design…

3D Systems Completes The Acquisition of Z Corp


Announced on the 3rd January 2012 3D Systems has completed the acquisition of Z Corporation and Vidar Systems.

The acquisition integrates Z Corp and Vidar products and services with 3D Systems’ extensive portfolio, uniquely positioning 3D Systems for accelerated growth in the dynamic, rapidly expanding 3D content-to-print space.

“This is a historic, game changing event for our customers and stockholders.  Today we gained full colour and high speed 3D printing technology, increased our marketplace presence significantly in verticles beyond product development and direct manufacturing, assembled the largest and most-well prepared reseller channel in 3D printing, and catalyzed our healthcare solutions business”, said Abe Reichental, President and CEO of 3D Systems.


3D Systems to unveil Cubify

Video:  Cubify 3D Printer

3D Systems corporation plans to unveil its 3D software for creating designs for 3D printing on mobile devices, tablets and Kinect.

Along with the intuitive 3D apps, a personal printer, the Cube 3D Printer, has been specifically designed to turn any digital canvas to a physical model.  Priced at US$1,299, the printer is ready to print right out of the box in a wide range of vibrant colours.    

The Cube 3D printer will be fully commercialised during the first half of 2012 – so keep an eye of this space.