Fostering electronics development through 3D printing (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – #126)

The field of electronics has been particularly prone to evolution in the past, with the shrinking of the circuitry and increasing of computational powers. However, it’s always been an inherently multi-step production process which reduces the opportunities for exploration into new shapes, material, and properties. 3D printing is beginning to apply its features to electronics as part of the multi-material printing push. This not only enables innovators to experiment much more freely with their PCBs, but iterations can also happen much more frequently. For testing purposes, this is the perfect combination. New satellites are being developed (and sent to the ISS) as well as new eco-friendly electronics that dissolve into the environment. For many companies, this is the means to a faster product development cycle for items that had to be ordered from China, shipped, tested and ordered anew with a few tweaks. The ability to print electronics in the lab is a very powerful tool.

International Space Station Will Test 3D-Printed Materials In Orbit

Nano Dimension's 3D printing process in action.

New 3D-printed materials are going to space thanks to a recently funded partnership between Israel’s NanoDimension and Florida’s Harris Corp. The companies plan to create new materials to reduce the manufacturing of small satellites, an exceedingly popular market right now for applications ranging from weather observations to remote surveillance.

Read the rest at Forbes.

Collaboration sparks sustainable electronics manufacturing breakthrough

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Simon Fraser University and Swiss researchers are developing an eco-friendly, 3D printable solution for producing wireless Internet-of-Things (IoT) sensors that can be used and disposed of without contaminating the environment. SFU professor Woo Soo Kim is leading the research team’s discovery involving the use of a wood-derived cellulose material to replace the plastics and polymeric materials currently used in electronics.

Read the full article at EurekAlert.

NanoDimensions and Hensoldt Partner to Develop 3D Printed Sensor Technologies

The 3D printed radio frequency (RF) circuit board. Photo via Nano Dimension.

Israeli 3D printed electronics manufacturer NanoDimension has partnered with Hensoldt, a German-headquartered sensor technology specialist. The two companies will use the DragonFly electronics 3D printer to develop applications for Hensoldt’s security and defense division. Thomas Stocker, Hensoldt’s Head of Engineering, said,

“Our focus is on providing our customers with the highest quality cutting-edge innovations […] By using the DragonFly, we’ve already accelerated our application development.”

Read the full article at 3D Printing Industry.

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Engineering Bespoke AM Materials (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 13)

This week we analyze how AM is broadening its own range of materials through innovative research and contributing to material research outside its own realm.

AM is greatly diversifying the choice of materials at its disposal, through material engineering or process improvements. New, super-stretchy polymers from SUTD promise a host of applications in flexible electronics and soft robots while a new microdroplets process from WSU allows for the manufacturing of structures with custom porosity and other properties. All the while, AM is the enabler of new bacteria processed, graphene-like materials.

As you can see, we’ve got a lot to cover!

New Elastomers Stretch 1100% for 3D Printing

Elastomers Stretch 1100% for 3D Printing

Researchers have developed a family of elastomers that they believe are the most elastic to date [up to 1100%] and can be fabricated using 3D-printing technologies, making these useful materials more accessible for a range of applications from soft robots to flexible electronics. “The new elastomers enable us to directly print complicated geometric structures and devices–such as a 3D soft robotic gripper–within an hour,” said Qi Ge, an assistant professor at the SUTD’s DManD Centre, and a co-leader of the project.

Read more here.

Nanostructure 3D printing mimics bio-materials

[…] researchers from Washington State University (WSU) have developed a method which can print metal structures with complex 3D architectures, controlling details down to the nanoscale and closely mimicking the architecture of natural bio-materials like wood and bone. This technique is likely to find other applications in batteries, supercapacitors and biological scaffolds.

Read more about it at Cosmos Magazine.

3D-printed bacteria could make bespoke graphene-like materials

Wonder material: graphene

How do you make a bespoke material with graphene-like properties? By putting bacteria to work using a 3D printer. Such bacteria could create brand new materials. For example, if you could use bacteria to print a substance resembling graphene – the 2D material made of single-atom layers of carbon – the end product might have similar desirable properties.

Read more at New Scientist.

 

We were at AMUG this week, holding a roundtable on AM process management challenges and solutions. We are grateful for the opportunity to share ideas with so many interesting people!

 

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