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Video: Mario Kart Live and 3D printing

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BCN3D celebrates Super Mario Bros’ 35th anniversary with a 3D printed Rainbow Road!

3D printer manufacturer BCN3D put its entire farm to work in order to celebrate the 35th anniversary of Super Mario Bros! Don’t miss the original final result in the video below.

Video: 3D printed Rainbow Road for the new Mario Kart Live to celebrate Super Mario Bros’ 35th anniversary. Author: BCN3D Technologies.

Barcelona-based company BCN3D successfully recreated the legendary “Rainbow Road” for the freshly released Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit. This new Nintendo game consists of driving a real-life Mario Kart with Nintendo Switch console thanks to augmented reality. In total, the 16.4 ft by 17.7 ft race track incorporates 4,400 PLA pieces – all of them 3D printed–.

3D printed Rainbow Road at BCN3D HeadQuartes in Barcelona
This colorful Rainbow Road track consists of 4400 3D printed PLA pieces and its size is 5 x 5,4 meters. Source: BCN3D.

“We would love to inspire and challenge others to imagine and fabricate their own circuits, so if you would like to also bring the fun from Mario Kart into the real world, you can find all the STL files on Thingiverse. Don’t forget to share your creations with us!”

BCN3D Blog.

Download the STL files on Thingiverse to 3D print your own Rainbow Road circuit.

Of course, you will have to be patient if you want to get a circuit of the same size, putting the 4,400 pieces together is not a quick process!

Print Settings

  • Printer brand: BCN3D
  • Printer: BCN3D SIGMA
  • Rafts: No
  • Supports: No
  • Resolution: 0.3
  • Infill: –
  • Filament_brand: BCN3D
  • Filament_color: Yellow, Orange, Red, Purple, Blue, Light Blue, Green, Black and White
  • Filament_material: PLA

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Scientists 3D print decoy sea turtle eggs to spy on poachers

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Sea turtles are facing a massive poaching problem. Already having to deal with the early consequences of global warming, most sea turtle species are hunted for their meat, their shells, and the eggs – especially the eggs –. These last are considered an aphrodisiac and a delicacy in some regions. In fact, Poachers destroy more than 90% of sea turtle nests on many Central American beaches because the eggs are in high demand. Fortunately, a wildlife conservation group on the South Coast is fighting illegal poaching of sea turtle eggs through a solution that integrates 3D printing and GSM-GPS Tracking technologies. Keep reading this article to find out how the InvestEGGator helps lead conservation groups to the poachers directly thanks to a rather clever idea, Ninjaflex filament, the LulzBot Mini 3D printer, and some pretty basic technology.

What is the InvestEGGator and how it works?

InvestEGGator it’s basically a decoy sea turtle egg – about the size of a ping pong ball – that has a GPS inside to track down poachers. What is more, this device will monitor and send real-time information about the movements between poachers and intermediaries whenever the eggs are being carried from one place of hiding to another. The InvestEGGator currently uses mobile networks widely available in Central America and throughout the global tropics where sea turtles nest. Therefore, its creators claim this solution is both feasible and scalable.

Inside look at an InvestEGGator decoy egg
Image: Inside look at an InvestEGGator decoy egg. Caption: InvestEGGator is a low-cost dummy turtle egg with an internally embedded tracker. It replicates the appearance, weight, and feel of real turtle eggs. The GPS and SIM card inside the egg connect to a smartphone so that conservationists can track the movements through an app. Source: InvestEGGator official website.

Using NinjaFlex filament and the LulzBot Mini 3D printer to create the InvestEGGator

The surface of the InvestEGGator replicates the texture, feel, appearance, dimensions, and weight of a real sea turtle egg. As a matter of fact, real eggs have a flexible, leathery shell, slightly larger than a ping-pong ball and with a softer shell. Besides, weight is a crucial factor since lighter eggs risk falling out of the mix or sinking to the bottom. Therefore, to simulate a real sea turtle egg, conservation scientist Kim Williams-Guillen uses NinjaFlex filament, from the manufacturer NinjaTek. This TPU thermoplastic offers great flexibility, very suitable for the texture that is intended to be achieved. 

She also used the LulzBot Mini 3D printer, a desktop solution that boasts high throughput for parts. As a result, scientists got an artificial egg that mimics the attributes of natural Olive Ridley eggs weighing 50 grams with a 40 mm diameter. The only difference indeed is the built-in GPS and SIM card inside. Furthermore, the prototypes turn out to be completely harmless to the real turtle eggs to mix with. In turn, it helps save not just one, but multiple species of sea turtles.

“We make the fake sea turtle egg by 3D printing it with a very flexible kind of plastic. We add some silicon on the inside. We seal that up. We sand it and we paint it.”

Kim Williams-Guillen, conservation scientist with Ventura-based nonprofit Paso Pacifico who developed these artificial sea turtle eggs.

Protecting sea turtle nests from poaching can reverse population declines

InvestEGGator decoy eggs may be the solution to ending illegal poaching, which currently has devastating effects on sea turtle populations. “You can see right there where the egg is traveling down that roadway there and into the parking lot,” says Paso Pacifico Executive Director Sarah Otterstrom. Law enforcement can in fact use the data to identify major transit routes and cripple the illegal egg trade.

“We found that the eggs work. They move. We’ve got tracking data on that. It’s helped get patterns in poacher behavior. And, they don’t do any harm to the nests if they don’t get poached,” she says.

Helen Pheasy, a PhD candidate from the University of Kent in the United Kingdom who’s studying biodiversity management. Helen has successfully tested The artificial eggs on beaches off Costa Rica.
Just-born baby sea turtle about to make its way to the sea in Central America.
Just-born baby sea turtle about to make its way to the sea in Central America. Source: Paso Pacífico.

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Using 3D printing construction technology to create Modern buildings

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3D printing construction service by HS-HITECH managed to build one-of-a-kind architectural elements that allow both designers and engineers to design freely while supporting the massive production of customized products. By using HP Multi Jet Fusion technology, the Korean company was able to design the various joints of a glass substructure called Blobee. This structure actually serves as a workspace, a simple coffee shop, or even a room to rest.

More outstanding, not only HS-HITECH successfully surpassed current shape and geometry limitations in the industry, they also reduced lead times and costs in a great manner. In addition, the company has opened a Construction 3D printing laboratory to characterize manufacturing processes and go further in the creation process. See the video below for more information on this project:

Video: HS-HITECH Designs Atypical Buildings with HP Multi Jet Fusion Technology

Caption: “With HP Multi Jet Fusion technology, HS-Hitech can create uniquely designed architectural elements, allowing designers and engineers to design freely while supporting large-quantity production of customized products.” Author: HP. Source: Youtube.

Thanks to HP MJF technology, HS HITECH was able to imagine Blobee, a system of custom-made joints that can be assembled together regardless of their shape. The end result is a multifunctional, fully glazed space. The company points out that the HP machines offer both greater speed of execution and the ability to produce large customized parts. 

In most cases, current manufacturing methods are not suitable for imagining atypical architectures, façades, and interiors, mainly in terms of geometries:

“For example, if we imagine that there are triangles with different angles at the same vertex, the structures supporting them are not in the same plane or phase. Several efforts are then required to bring these parts together and we have based our entire joining system on these geometry issues“.

Seung Gyu Yu, Head officer at the Construction 3D Printing laboratory

HS-HITECH is an interesting company in the industry of 3D printing. It operates primarily as a manufacturer of electronics and semiconductors (for which it also uses 3D printing). Though HS-HITECH remains rather discreet about the arrival of these atypical structures in the world, we will not fail to keep info up-to-date about the progress of this project.

Blobee architectural element made with the help of Construction 3D printing technology
Image: Final results of the Boblee project. Source: HS-HITECH.

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New 3D printed air filter keeps the air clean inside cars and public transportation

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The AMS Auto device is an air filter system that eliminates viruses and bacteria in subways, cars, and buses

Eliminating airborne active viruses inside cars, vans, trains or buses is now possible. FICEPS3 (FICEP Steel Surface Systems S.L. – Barcelona, ​​Spain) developed an innovative air filter system prototype made with the help of additive manufacturing technologies (3D printing). Just to give you a clue, the AMS Auto is capable of sterilizing the air and getting rid of more than 95% of viruses, bacteria, and microorganisms. Would you like to know more about this invention? Keep reading this article to know how this air filter device works.

AMS Auto, for virus-free means of transport

Although the pandemic seems to be more “under control”, there are still many people who NEED to use public transportation. Besides, for obvious reasons, those who work as drivers need a safe environment too. Facing this scenario, FICEPS3 decided to create an air filtering device adapted to closed means of transport in general.

A render of the AMS Auto air filter.
Image: Digital rendering of the AMS Auto prototype. This air filter system aims to help protecting most service sector staff such as bus, taxi, and ambulance drivers from viruses and bacteria. However, the company does not specifies how many pieces of the AMS Auto use 3D printing.Source: FICEPS3.

AMS Auto ensures that the air inside vehicles remains sterile and clean of viruses and microorganisms. The model incorporates two USB ports for charging batteries and four attachment points that can be attached to different parts of the vehicle, such as the back of the seat. Its design is small and has an airflow designed for the needs of private and public transportation, thus being one of the most affordable and powerful alternatives so far. The AMS Auto system can reduce the spread of viruses and microbes by filtering and sterilizing the air around us.

How does AMS Auto work?

It is an air sterilization system that removes volatile organic compounds before this air is expelled again through:

  1. A broad spectrum of sealed UVC light
  2. a photochemical process

Continuously and silently, the prototype filters the air and exposes it to a large amount of ultraviolet light, as well as a photochemical process to ensure sterilization. Just for the record: The structure fully contains the UV light inside, so it is not harmful to people.

In other words, a cyclical system processes the air, exposing it to as much UV light as possible before leaving the system so that the air coming out of the device is free from dangerous bacteria and microorganisms, deactivating viruses found in the environment, including aerosols that are processed in the air such as SARS-CoV-2.

3D printing technology to materialize the AMS Auto

To create the AMS Auto, the FICEPS3 team used the same additive manufacturing technology as with the AMS mini. They used the Multi Jet Fusion method from the manufacturer HP, using polyamide PA12 as printing material. This device has 3 different modes intended for different transportation scenarios. Hopefully in the near future, more initiatives just as innovative and useful as this one will emerge so that society can return to a “new normality” in a much safer way, in terms of health.

AMS Auto inside a real car.
FICEPS3 used the Multi Jet Fusion technology by HP and polyamide PA12 as printing material for the AMS Auto. This is how an air filter would look at the front-seat back. Source: FICEPS3.

Nuno Neves, General Director at FICEPS3, comments the following:

“In today’s healthcare context, we believe that additive manufacturing is a fantastic tool for all those professionals in the service sector who use a vehicle to carry out their work. Taxis, train or subway cars, buses, ambulances, etc. They can now count on an air sterilization system capable of filtering the air and freeing it of viruses and bacteria ”.

Why is AMS Auto a good alternative to keep the clean air inside vehicles?

The idea of ​​creating a device specifically for vehicles is precisely to be able to ensure the instant air filtration of the vehicle, offering up to ten filter speeds. At its full power, the AMS auto is capable of processing all the air inside a mid-size car in less than a minute.

For more comfortable use, the AMS auto has a filter status indicator that points out the current filter status and if a new one needs to be inserted. In turn, it also has an indicator that informs about the correct operation of the device or whether any maintenance action is necessary.

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What do you think of the 3D printed AMS Auto? Leave your comments in the section below and share the news on your social networks!

COLIBRÍ3D launches new JADE Professional 3D printer and CONSTRUCTOR 3D Design Software license for under USD $10

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Mexican-based project COLIBRÍ3D recently launched an early sale campaign in order to promote its own Software & Hardware products: The JADE model 3D printer and the 3D Constructor PRO design software. Whether if used by professionals or by beginners, both products promise to be High-Quality technologies delivering intuitive User Experience at particularly affordable prices.

Right now, COLIBRÍ3D Rewards Campaign offers different rewards for its sponsors through special prices, starting from only 10 USD dollars (199.00 MXN) for a Constructor PRO 3D Design software lifetime license and 292.98 USD dollars (5,995.00 MXN) for the JADE 3D Printer, while the biggest rewards include Integral Additive Manufacturing Center and 3D Printing Farm kits.

2020 has been a year of many challenges for design and manufacturing companies, academic institutions, teachers, and students learning at home, creators, and entrepreneurs. That is why we want to make available to all of them a functional and personalized custom manufacturing tool for easy use, as well as an accessible 3D modeling platform so that they can continue designing their projects and materializing their ideas.

– Alfie R. R., Leader of the COLIBRÍ3D project. Source: COLIBRÍ3D

Details about the JADE & CONSTRUCTOR

The JADE 3D printer has a manufacturing volume of 22 x 22 x 25 cm. It is easy to install, compatible with more than 10 different materials, silent, and accessible. On the other hand, the Constructor PRO 3D design software has 8 modules among which features such as converting 2D traces to 3D, solids of revolution, basic edition of STL’s, and digital sculpture, stand out. You can find further details and specifications for both products on their official website.

CONSTRUCTOR 3D Design software
Image: CONSTRUCTOR interface sample. Source: Colibrí3D.

Video – COLIBRÍ3D: Reinvent the future of custom manufacturing

Video: Reinvent the future of custom manufacturing. (Turn on subtitles for english). Source: Youtube.

To date, COLIBRÍ3D identifies 3 important market segments:

  • Manufacturing companies looking for design and reducing manufacturing times and costs.
  • Students and teachers at home who require digital and tangible resources that are accessible for teaching and learning.
  • Entrepreneurs and creators who need accessible tools to carry out their ideas and projects.

About COLIBRÍ3D

COLIBRÍ3D is a project from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. The 7 members of the team are passionate about custom manufacturing who seek to reinvent the future of this field by enabling to both enthusiasts and professionals an affordable, functional, and easy to use integral platform of 3D design and 3D printing.

Many years ago, COLIBRÍ3D had a great impact and sales rebound mainly in the northwestern part of Mexico. However, due to this accelerated growth, its technological development, technical support, and spare parts supply capabilities were all exceeded. As a result, they decided to move away for a while from the 3D printing scene in order to redefine its mission and vision. After listening to the real needs of current users of 3D technologies, Colibrí3D decided to take off and provide a unique and comprehensive experience for the design and manufacturing community so that everyone can digitize their projects and materialize their ideas through an accessible 3D design platform (Constructor PRO) and a professional 3D printer (JADE).

Now, its vision for this new decade is to reinvent the future of custom manufacturing in Mexico. The team is convinced that the key to achieving this goal is to delight its users again.

JADE 3D Printer - testing phase
Picture: An engineer from the COLIBRÍ3D team working with the JADE 3D printer during its development phase. Caption: At present, one of the biggest challenges for the project is scalability. That is, to integrate a team with local resources to immediately provide advice on the development of applications, support, training, tools, and necessary supplies so that its clients –existing and new– can carry out all of their projects in time & form. Source: Colibrí3D.

Upcoming updates in the manufacturing process

Currently, COLIBRÍ3D is the developer of the 3D Constructor PRO design software and, in a strategic alliance with a foreign manufacturer, it is managing to supply more than half of the components and assemblies of its new JADE 3D printer, however, being a project that seeks to consolidate as the benchmark in the development and manufacture of their own 3D technology in Mexico, they are evaluating various local manufacturers and suppliers so that their subsequent developments can be manufactured at least 60% – 80% within local facilities.

If you are a professional in the design and manufacturing industry, a student, teacher, creator, or entrepreneur, we strongly recommend you to take a look at this project, which will be open to raising funds from the second week of November 2020, until the second week of December 2020. After that, the delivery phase for these rewards will start in January 2021.

Contact COLIBRÍ3D

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What do you think about the new JADE 3D printer and Constructor 3D Design Software? If you liked this news post, leave a comment and don’t forget to share it on your favorite social media.

Adidas reveals Futurecraft STRUNG 3D printed shoes

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Adidas has been working with 3D printing technologies for a few years, trying to find new ways to make footwear. Its FUTURECRAFT division, for instance, aims to shape the future of sports through its innovations with concepts, such as the FUTURECRAFT 4D shoes with a 3D printed lattice sole. Recently, Adidas announced its latest technology, STRUNG, a revolutionary textile innovation that aims to further improve footwear performance.

“As a business, we’re constantly striving for optimum footwear performance. To achieve this, we need to get the most out of our materials […] This is why we developed STRUNG: an industry-first textile and creation process that allows us to input athlete data into the precision placement of each thread in any direction we choose. “

Adidas Futurecraft.Strung team

Right now, the team is able to build and test different structures in the software before sending their design to the STRUNG robot, which places each thread into a single composite with specific performance zones and properties. Besides, the prototype weighs just 220g (7.7oz).

Futurecraft Strung 3d printed shoes
Picture: FUTURECRAFT.STRUNG first product concept. In order to create this, Adidas identified two runners as experts in a specific type of running. Both runners provided motion capture and ongoing feedback to support development. At present, the STRUNG is just a prototype. Source: Adidas Blog.

Adidas’ Futurecraft team uses Digital Light Synthesis technology to create the STRUNG 3D printed shoes

While FUTURECRAFT 4D used 3D printing technologies to fabricate the sole, STRUNG uses a unique process to combine the athlete’s profile, additive manufacturing, and robotics to create the shoe. The result is a lightweight upper that’s fits precisely to give support, flex, and breathability — all within one piece of material.

Moreover, the STRUNG shoe does not need reinforcement from other components that can hinder the natural movement of athletes, as is the case with other textiles.

The Strung robot from Adidas
Picture: the STRUNG robot. Source: Adidas.

Being able to manufacture a custom part is one of the most beneficial characteristics of additive manufacturing. Therefore, Adidas’ latest shoe concept combines STRUNG technology for the upper and FUTURECRAFT technology for the midsole. In fact, the midsole is made with Carbon’s DLS (Digital Light Synthesis). This Additive Manufacturing technology relies on a photopolymerization process to harden a resin layer by layer and create the performance-enhancing lattice structure.

“Futurecraft 3D is a prototype and a statement of intent. We have used a one-of-its-kind combination of process and material in an entirely new way […] Our 3D-printed midsole not only allows us to make a great running shoe but also to use performance data to drive truly bespoke experiences, meeting the needs of any athlete.”

Eric Liedtke, Executive Board Member of Adidas AG.

The first STRUNG shoe for the public is currently in development. It will be released in late 2021 or early 2022. Adidas wants to expand the use of the STRUNG upper to other sports. You can find more information about FUTURECRAFT.STRUNG project on the Adidas official website.

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3D print your own HOTAS Flight Stick for PS4 and XBOX

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Make your own Microsoft Flight Simulator HOTAS setup with a 3D printer

Playing ‘ Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 ‘ is a delight, but doing it with the special setup makes it even more realistic. A basic joystick of this type costs about USD $ 189.00, but if you have access to a 3D printer, you can print a unique design that turns a PS4 or Xbox One controller into a HOTAS flight stick! 

This time credit goes to Akaki Kuumeri, the guy who designed both the PS4 DualShock Joystick HOTAS version and the XBOX gamepad HOTAS joystick Version. The best part is that you will only have to invest a couple of bucks in 3D printing filament and a few printing hours to make your own flight sticks.

I thought I’d pitch in and roll my own with my 3D printer, and perhaps that could elevate or enhance your simulation experience. It’s super simple to make with a 3D printer and I’ll air on the side of caution when I say it’ll be about ten bucks and perhaps an afternoon of your time to make one of these.

Akaki Kuumeri, master of aviation puns.

That said, let’s take action! Watch a couple of Akaki Kuumeri videos to give you an idea of how these curious items work. You will also find the Thingiverse files for both controllers below:

Video: Turn your PS4 DualShock into a dual stick HOTAS and try Star Wars: Squadrons

Youtube video: Turn your PS4 DualShock into a dual stick HOTAS and try Star Wars: Squadrons.

Thingiverse files to download STL: PS4 DualShock Joystick HOTAS / HOSAS

Video: Make your XBOX gamepad into a joystick HOTAS with this 3D printed extension

Youtube video: Make your XBOX gamepad into a joystick HOTAS with this 3D printed extension.

Thingiverse files to download STL: Snap-on XBOX gamepad HOTAS joystick

3D printable HOTAS (Hands-On Throttle-And-Stick) is an affordable alternative to play flight simulators or games like the recent ‘Star Wars: Squadrons’ in a more immersive way. The result is really fantastic and promising, and there are also versions for Yoke, XBOX ONE, and Switch Pro.

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Download Silence: A 3D printed book that comes in braille.

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World’s first flexible 3D printed book that integrates Braille, words, and illustrations

There is no better project to honor Mundial Sight Day than ‘Silence’ than the first tactile and flexible 3D printed book. ‘Silencio’, which means Silence in English language, is the final year project of graphic designer Jennifer Martín-Lorente. Inside the book, you can find the collection of poems that Néstor Toribio Ruiz wrote by way of micro-stories. Stories that relate feelings and sensory experiences, in many synesthetic occasions. In order to make it accessible to everyone, the book integrates the Braille system, lettering, and illustrations in relief. In short, a book to be read with the senses.

Picture: The Silence 3d printed book. Caption: Even though it has independent sentences, Silence tells us a whole short story. It required the participation of the O.N.C.E. organization as they needed a braille writer.
Picture: The Silence book. Caption: Even though it has independent sentences, Silence tells us a whole short story. It required the participation of the O.N.C.E. organization as they needed a braille writer. © Jennifer Martín-Lorente

The process of creating the book ‘Silence’

Usually, a Braille book is quite expensive. Therefore, the biggest benefit of ‘Silence’ is that it is an open-source model. This means that anyone with an FDM 3D printer can download the file and print it from home, making it even more accessible to everyone. However, authors of the project say that it can be a complex 3D printing process, as it is a very flat object. Clearly, we must take a series of parameters into account when 3D printing. The extrusion temperature should be between 230ºC and 240ºC, and the retractions should be as fast and distant as possible. The designer did dozens of tests with different laminators, but in the end, she ended up making the printing profiles and generating the gcodes with the Cura version 15.04.6 laminator.

“It is a book of illustrated poetry taking advantage of the relief of 3D printing, to be able to read and touch, both for sighted and blind people, offering tactile communication for all”.

Jennifer Martín-Lorente
3d printed book in braille and illustrations english language Caption: The original book 3D printed in Recreus Filaflex material. Print Settings and Post-Printing details of the Silence Braille book are all available on Thingiverse. © Jennifer Martín-Lorente
Caption: The original book 3D printed in Recreus Filaflex material. Print Settings and Post-Printing details of the Silence Braille book are all available on Thingiverse. © Jennifer Martín-Lorente

The importance of  the material used to print ‘Silence’

The material is a key part of the project! Given that ‘Silence’ is a book designed to be touched, both its texts and its illustrations in relief to give accessibility to blind people, it was essential to making the book pleasant to the touch. In the research phase, Jennifer did the first tests with PLA, but the stiffness of the filament was not adequate to be read by touch. Among the different materials, Jennifer Martin-Lorente opted for the Filaflex filament, from the manufacturer Recreus. The flexible filament Filaflex is a very versatile material with which to imitate the flexibility of a page and not lose definition when capturing the text and the other elements that make up the book. In this way, Filaflex offers a comfortable and pleasant experience when fingerprinting the Braille and illustrations.

Jennifer comments: “3D printing offers total autonomy when it comes to product design”. In that sense, flexible Filaflex filament is an innovative material with unique qualities for creating projects in any design sector. Other advantages of this material is that it is very resistant, easy to fold, can be washed and does not wrinkle, making it a perfect option for this project.

To date, the ‘Silence’ book archive has already achieved more than 2,000 downloads. If you want to see it in person, you can go to the PRINT 3D exhibition at CosmoCaixa Barcelona, ​​where it will be exposed to the public until September 2021. You can find more information on the Tactile book official website.

Undoubtedly, 3D printing is a successful technology in many sectors, being able to make great innovations with it, as is the case with this solidarity project. What do you think of the Tactile 3D printed book ‘Silence’’? Leave your comments on the section below.

This 3D printed bike wheel is capable of purifying the air

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The shift from cars to bicycles is already an important step towards cleaner air, especially in big cities, where pollution is reaching alarming levels. But what if we could go one step further? What if bicycles could help reduce pollution by purifying the air around us? Well, industrial designer Kristen Tapping invented just that. She designed the Rolloe model, a wheel consisting of three different filters capable of purifying the air of pollutants. She actually used 3D printing to prototype various parts of the innovative wheel. Using ABS, nylon, and stainless steel, Kristen has developed 600 x 600 x 600mm wheel prototypes hoping that they will help reduce pollution in our cities.

Rolloe Roll Off Emissions: Innovative bike wheels that remove pollution from the air

The idea came while cycling around London. In traffic, the heat, the gases, and the smell really get you aware of the pollution. Concerned about environmental problems, Kristen Tapping pointed out all the sources of pollution that may exist in our cities, sharing statistics that are not reassuring for our planet. For example, road transport is responsible for 70% of nitrogen dioxide emissions and 30% of dangerous particles in the air. All of this got her thinking: If air purifiers use circulation to filter air, why not using the spinning wheels of vehicles to catch pollution in the prime place that it’s happening? In Rolloe’s case, we see the active use of 3D printing technology to purify the air using bicycle wheels.

Picture: Kristen Tapping, an industrial design graduated from London Southbank University holding the Rolloe prototype. Her award-winning invention, Rolloe Roll Off Emissions, transforms the humble bicycle wheel into an air purifier that sucks in polluted air, filters out the pollutants, and releases the clean air back out into the world. So far, this would be one of the greenest ways to truly travel carbon-negative.
Picture: Kristen Tapping, an industrial design graduated from London Southbank University holding the Rolloe prototype. Her award-winning invention, Rolloe Roll Off Emissions, transforms the humble bicycle wheel into an air purifier that sucks in polluted air, filters out the pollutants, and releases the clean air back out into the world. So far, this would be one of the greenest ways to truly travel carbon-negative. © KRISTEN TAPPING.

A partially 3D printed project for the benefit of the environment

The Rolloe wheel is made up of different parts that can be produced through 3D printing or injection molding. It integrates two ABS finned wheels and a nylon disc, two thermoplastics with great resistance to shocks. Kristen used Stainless steel to manufacture the shaft. Inside the rim, the designer placed three different types of filters. First, the air is channeled through the inner cylindrical opening of the rim, then filtered, and finally expelled through the outer fins. During this cycle, air purification could be carried out at a speed of 0.665 m³ per kilometer.

Kristen explains the different functions of the filters: “The first is a natural loofah sponge that traps large particles. It is washable, reusable and 100% biodegradable. Then there is a washable HEPA filter, which traps pollen and some large particles like dust. Finally, the third filter is an activated carbon filter to trap individual gas molecules. Therefore, it is ideal for filtering volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and even odors ”. The young designer also specifies that it will be necessary to change the filters every 250 km approximately.

Diagram: Manufacturing, Specifications & Materials. © KRISTEN TAPPIN
Diagram: Manufacturing, Specifications & Materials of the Rolloe Bike Wheel. © KRISTEN TAPPIN
Rolloe 3d printed bike wheel: Air is sucked into the wheel, filtered and released back into the world © KRISTEN TAPPING
Diagram: Rolloe 3d printed bike wheel prototype. Caption: Three filters are inserted into the rim to retain airborne contaminants. Air is sucked into the wheel, filtered and released back into the world. © KRISTEN TAPPIN

Rolloe’s Scalability

At the moment, Rolloe is still in the testing phase and must try different filter methods. However, Kristen has already done her numbers. If all Santander bikes were equipped with wheels of this type in London (the London bike share system), we could filter 79,865 m3 of air. That’s 4 times the size of Trafalgar Square! Eventually, the idea would be to equip Rolloe with a tracking device to locate the bike and calculate the distance traveled in real-time, but also to share the trips with the community, track the amount of filtered air, etc. In this way, Kristen hopes to create social commitment and raise awareness among city dwellers about pollution issues. You can find more details about the award-winning design HERE.

Picture: Scalability of the project. Caption: Bicycle wheel that uses movement to actively purify air using washable filters. Rolloe wheels operate in prime polluted roadways and require zero energy to function. The concept is targeted at ride sharing bicycles such as Santander and Mobike rewarding consumers based on distance traveled. © KRISTEN TAPPING
Picture: Scalability of the project. Caption: Bicycle wheel that uses movement to actively purify air using washable filters. Rolloe wheels operate in prime polluted roadways and require zero energy to function. The concept is targeted at ride sharing bicycles such as Santander and Mobike rewarding consumers based on distance traveled. © KRISTEN TAPPING

If 10% of all London cyclists had one Rolloe installed on their bike, they would filter approximately 20 times the size of Trafalgar Square.

Kristen Tapping

What do you think of the 3D printed Rolloe wheel capable of purifying the air? Leave your comments in the section below and don’t forget to spread the good news on social media!

3D Printed Rockets

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The first 3D printing factory Relativity Space is making history by printing rockets in days and not years.  After moving to their new location in Long Beach, California they have already started to manufacture rockets.

SpaceX Roots

Their vice president is Zack Dunn previously working for Elon Musk of SpaceX fame for almost 13 years.  Now he is in charge of launch and production.  Dunn is extremely happy with what Relativity Space has achieved.

Terran 1

Relativity Space has already begun the process of printing a Terran 1 model of rockets.  An astounding 95% of the rocket will be 3D printed with only the electrical systems not being printed.  They stated that they will be able to have a new rocket on the Launchpad within 60 days of the printing start.

rocket

CEO Tim Ellis

The CEO Tim Ellis stated that they currently were using seven third-generation 3D printers.  He was quoted, “The new printers are operational and actually printing our first flight parts right now, so we have several printers building the first rocket we’re actually going to fly to orbit. We’re building our first stage for our first flight, as well as the second stage which we started a few weeks ago.”

3D Printing a Rocket

Built In Sections

Once the rockets are built and on the Launchpad, Terran 1 will be 115 feet tall.  Relativity Space decided to print the rocket in sections and run the printers in parallel in order to save time.

Dunn was quoted as saying, “We’re able to print on each printer a foot [of metal] a day, so when we’re running on all the printers together we’ll be able to print a rocket in less than a month.”

sections

Custom Materials

They have even designed their own custom aluminum alloy, which they have refined over years of development.  Their use of 3D printing has drawn skepticism from their competitors who have all delved into additive printing but still use older methods from 60 years ago for most of their builds.

The Future

So, with industry finial getting involved and not afraid to try new things.  We just might see more missions to Mars, the Moon, and beyond in the future.  Who knew what an impact 3D printing would have in space!

Five Best Life-Size Prints

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How many times since buying your first 3D printer have you thought it would be fun to print something life-size?  Well many others have had to same desire, and made it a reality.  In this article I will pick five of what in my opinion are the best life-size prints.  So, let’s look at number five.

Number Five

I know when most people think of 3D printing Star Wars they think of R2D2 and C3PO or even a Stormtrooper helmet and suit.  How about instead a full-size 3D printed Jabba the Hut. That’s what Reddit’s “MightyJabbs” decided to do.  Using a model created by Josh Smith from Beast Toy and a Creality CR-10 S4 and S5 printers with .8mm nozzles.  He made his dream come true.  His many months of printing are chronicled on YouTube.  Please check it out here:

Part 1: https://youtu.be/5aE8cWbiAN8, Part 2: https://youtu.be/GMyucNXPgHk, Part 3: https://youtu.be/XhPPiMLh9Ls, Part 4: https://youtu.be/0M0uoj1zLxs

Jabba

Number Four

Wow, I always wanted to print my own motorcycle!  Well, this next print does not actually run, or is it ridable; it is a life-size 3D printed replica of a 1972 Honda CB500.  It was printed on the Ultimaker 3D printer with 18 rolls of clear 3mm PLA by Jonathan Brand an artist. So, that brings us to number three.

cycle

Number Three

The next 3D printer life-size model was done for a good cause.  The World Animal Protection had a campaign called ‘Get off the Elephant’.  The aim was to persuade people to stop riding elephants.  The 3D print of the elephant was to be the centerpiece of the campaign and was printed in an Airport in Amsterdam on a specially created room size 3D printer. So, let’s look at number two.

Elephant

Number Two

Ok, this next one is just plain silly and it made laugh so hard I had to give it number two for a 3D printed rock. Reddit user solazee who lives in Norway printed it as a Christmas joke gift for a friend it weighs 5.5 Kg

rock

Number One

What’s the ultimate, how about a full-size drivable tank? Ivan Miranda thought the same thing and after designing a small scale version.  Decided to upscale his design into something he could ride in. It weighed in at 124 Kg dry weight.  When asked about how much filament was used, he simply stated he doesn’t know or care.

tank

Summery

That’s just five of many.  While looking I found full-size robots, selfies, swords, fantasy guns, and even spaceships.  I almost included the person that built a full-size X-Wing.  There are amazing prints out there and not just rocks.  Many are still in the planning stages and others have been years in the making and still not quite done.  Now go find your next project, there are no limits to 3D printing.  That’s why we enjoy this hobby!

Mambo, the world’s first 3D printed fiberglass boat

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World’s First 3D Printed Fiberglass Boat by Moi Composites Debuts at Genova Boat Show 2020

Italian start-up Moi Composites has just unveiled the first-ever real functional 3D printed boat made of a continuous fiberglass thermoset material. MAMBO, which stans for Motor Additive Manufacturing Boat, it’s being currently displayed at the 60th edition Genoa Boat Show 2020.

MAMBO signifies the latest in design and production innovation, efficiency, and personalization. Source: Moi Composites
Source: Moi Composites

MAMBO specs

MAMBO spans 6.5 meters long by 2.5 meters wide and has a dry weight of approximately 800 kg. It is equipped with a real navigation system, cork flooring, white leather seats, and 115 cv engine. The hull is an inverted tricycle inspired by the famous Arcidiavolo by Sonny Levi, structural and functional elements.

Moi designed and 3D printed MAMBO in two months and in two countries (Italy & UK). The 6.5m long fiberglass motorboat manufacturing phase was done with Continuous Fiber Manufacturing (CFM) technology.

Moi uses Continuous Fiber Manufacturing (CFM) technology and robots to create MAMBO. Source: Moi Composites

CFM technology involves the use of robotic machines, able to deposit continuous fibers impregnated with thermosetting resin in order to create products with optimized performance, starting from a three-dimensional model of the object. 

In order to achieve the MAMBO project, Moi partnered with the following  leading marine and industry experts:

  • Autodesk
  • Catmarine
  • Confindustria Nautica
  • Mercury Marine
  • MICAD
  • Osculati
  • Owens Corning

The various sections were printed using two KUKA Quantec High Accuracy robots in Milan, at Moi Composites’ headquarters, and in Autodesk’s AMF (Advanced Manufacturing Facility) in Birmingham, United Kingdom. Therefore, the overall project exemplifies on-site manufacturing, considered one of the most important strengths of 3D printing.

Above: MAMBO, the 3D printed fiberglass boat/Image Source: Moi Composites
Above: MAMBO, the 3D printed fiberglass boat/Image Source: Moi Composites

About Moi

Moi Composites, is a tech start-up that 3D prints custom products using advanced composite materials. When it comes about MAMBO, Gabriele Natale, CEO & Co-founder of Moi Composites says the following:

“We participated in the Genoa boat show in 2017, and it was during this event that we came up with the idea of making MAMBO. The team saw the project take shape first, then brought it to life, and finally, MAMBO arrived today at the sea. We have 3D printed a boat, enhancing the concept of customization with a one-of-a-kind design created and tailored from the owner’s mind, to give everyone the opportunity to understand and experience the sea in their own way. All this would not have happened without the support of our partners, who believed with us in this ambitious project.”

Gabriele Natale, CEO & Co-founder of Moi Composites. 

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