Swinburne plans industrial 3D printer for world-first Industry 4.0 Testlab

Director of Swinburne's Manufacturing Futures Research Institute, Professor Bronwyn Fox

Director of Swinburne’s Manufacturing Futures Research Institute, Professor Bronwyn Fox

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Swinburne University of Technology is to build the world’s first operational Industry 4.0 Testlab for carbon composite manufacturing as part of its research into digital manufacturing processes.

The facility will become home to the world’s first industrial scale 3D printing “multilayer” approach to carbon fibre composite manufacture, developed by Austrian engineering company, Fill.

Fill’s unique Multilayer printing technology will be able to produce commercial parts out of carbon fibre at a cheaper cost, according to a announcement on Monday, with minimal waste and improved production capability.

Swinburne has partnered with three equipment manufacturers and one supplier to demonstrate the manufacture of actual commercial parts in an integrated pilot line, which will include resin dispensing and curing in addition to the Multilayer process.

Carbon fibre composites are engineered materials offering infinite design flexibility and the opportunity to manufacture smart products.

However, they are currently difficult to produce in high volumes on a commercial scale due to limitations on manufacturing speed and high labour costs.

“With our industrial partners, we will create a digital twin of the process and push the boundaries of virtual commissioning,” says director of Swinburne’s Manufacturing Futures Research Institute, Professor Bronwyn Fox.

Swinburne’s move to implement the Industry 4.0 Testlab comes only months after receiving a record $135 industrial digitisation grant from engineering giant Siemens to digitise its Factory of the Future and create Australia’s first fully immersed Industry 4.0 facility.

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“Swinburne, with our partners, will lead the world in providing digital manufacturing solutions to secure Australia’s place in the lucrative intermediate product market.”

Products design and part manufacturer, Mulitmatic, is also partnering with Swinburne on the Multilayer process and Industry 4.0 Testlab to help maximise the opportunities for manufacturing processes and to develop a new product at competitive prices for the automotive industry.

“In order to make high value-add products from such materials affordable to manufacture on scale in Australia we are developing technologies and processes that have the potential to disrupt and transform the manufacturing and infrastructure industries,” said Swinburne’s Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research), Professor Aleksander Subic.

“The partnership with Fill (Austria) is of particular importance to our strategy as it allows us to introduce a unique form of 3D printing technology for composite products to our lab and fully automate the process.

“In the final stage, we will digitalise the lab through our strategic partnership with Siemens and the $135 Million industrial digitalisation grant awarded to Swinburne at the end of last year.

“This will be the first Industry 4.0 fully operational pilot plant of its kind in the world, offering unique educational and research opportunities to our students, staff and industry partners.”

JGAURORA 3d Printer A5 Full Metal Frame Large Print Volume 305X305X320mm Color Touch Screen Resume Print Filament Runs Out Detection 3d Printing Machine Home School Industry Use

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● Better customer experience, high print accuracy and high speed with quiet working, suit for school and home.

Layer thickness : 0.1-0.3mm
Filament Diameter:1.75mm
Build volume:305*305*320mm
Print speed:10-150mm/s
Nozzle diameter:0.4mm
Nozzle temp.:180~240’C
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Machine size:536(L)*480(W)*543(H)mm (21*18.9*21.3 in)
Machine weight:13.8KG (30.4Lbs)
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Leveling: Semi-Auto
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Materialise collaborates with PTC to make manufacturers Industry 4.0 ready

Software company PTC has teamed up with Belgium-based 3D printer market leader Materialise to expand the capabilities of its Creo CAD software.

Taking the form of a new software package, the collaboration will allow Creo users to integrate 3D printing into their manufacturing processes, with a special emphasis on metal additive manufacturing.

Part analysis in Creo. Image via PTC.Part-analysis in ThingWorx. Image via PTC.

Design with PTC, build with Materialise

The new PTC software package is intended for manufacturing end-use products and will be compatible with machines linked up to the Materialise Build Processor.

The Build Processor is a slicing feature of Materialise’s Magic 3D Print Suite, an all-encompassing 3D software bundle.

The enhanced connection between PTC CAD software and the Materialise Build Processor simplifies the integration of 3D printing for discrete manufacturers, making distinct items such as plane, cars and mobile phone.

The software package also includes Materialise’s support generation technology, which gives designers more control over the design and creation of metal support structures.

“This collaboration with PTC will expand access to 3D Printing and help engineers and designers think in terms of additive, rather than traditional manufacturing for rapid product design and development,” said Stefaan Motte, VP at Materialise Software.

“Together with Materialise, we will bridge the gap between CAD design software and the 3D printing machines,” added Brian Thompson, senior VP at PTC. 

A Chain Dress prepared for slicing in the materialise build processor. Image via Materialise.A chain-dress prepared for slicing in the Materialise build processor. Image via Materialise.

Integrating CAD, 3D printing and IoT with PTC

Materialise integration is the latest in a number of software integration agreements made by PTC to facilitate interaction between software and hardware.

In May 2017, 3D printer manufacturer 3D Systems announced that it was embedding intelligent features powered by PTC’s ThingWorx industrial internet of things (IIoT) platform into its machines, allowing users to monitor prints in real time.

Later that year, PTC integrated ANSYS simulation into its ThingWorx platform, allowing customers to both analyze the part manufacturing process and predict the component’s performance based on the design and a set of parameters.

Let us know what you think the most important 3D software release has been this year.Make your nominations for the 3D Printing Industry Awards 2018 now.

For more information on 3D software and industry 4.0, subscribe to our free 3D Printing Industry newsletter, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.

Featured image shows functional end-use part design in Creo. Photo via PTC.

Medical industry advances towards more efficient, customized 3D printed vaccinations

Dec 25, 2017 | By Tess

At a recent health conference in Bilbao, Spain about advancements in vaccinations, a number of professionals cited the potentials of 3D printing for advancing the efficiency of administering as well as customizing vaccines.

The conference, called “Advances in vaccines,” was hosted by the Association of Microbiology and Health (AMYS), as well as the Department of Pediatrics and the Department of Immunology, Microbiology, and Parasitology from the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU).

The event brought together experts from the field of vaccinations to speak about the current state of the sector and directions vaccination-related research is headed in the future. 3D printing, unsurprisingly, was a key topic of discussion.

One speaker, Pedro Alsina, from the Institutional Relations of Sanofi, spoke about how 3D printing will enable the production of customized vaccines, which can be tailored to the recipient’s genetic makeup.

Additionally, he said that it will soon be possible to 3D print vaccines inside structures that can either be administered externally (say, a patch stuck to the skin), or orally (as tablets or even inside fruits and vegetables, for instance). Having alternative methods for vaccinations other than needles could make it easier to deploy them to regions where medical staff are in short supply.

Research groups from around the globe are currently working on various methods for 3D printing vaccinations. At the University of California, Berkeley, for example, a team is developing a 3D printed device called MucoJet, which could allow people to administer their own vaccinations by using a pressurized system to shoot a stream of the vaccine into their inner cheek tissue.

In MIT’s laboratories, engineers are developing an alternative method which would use micro-scale 3D printing to make small “SEAL” holders for vaccinations which could be implanted with a single injection and release drug or vaccines doses over a defined period of time.

3D printed MucoJet device

These projects, and many more like them, suggest a promising future for vaccinations. Still, the medical system will need to adapt to handling faster developments in the field, said one expert at the conference.

“At present, the manufacturing of vaccines is a long and complex process due to the nature of the raw materials (microorganisms) and the quality control processes that occupy 70% of the total manufacturing time,” said Alsina, who suggests that vaccination regulations should be simplified and “harmonized” across all countries in order to increase innovation in the field.

Another key goal addressed at the conference was the development of more efficient vaccines, especially for such sicknesses as the flu. “We must work to achieve a more immunogenic injection in the most vulnerable people and for the universal flu vaccine so that it is not necessary to go through the process once a year,” said Dr. Ramón Cisterna, a professor of microbiology and the president of AMYS.

He also stated that the medical community advancing towards the development of vaccinations not only for infections, but also for tumor-based or metabolic diseases.

Posted in 3D Printing Application

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