On 13 and 14 March AMSYSTEMS Center and TNO’s two other Joint Innovation Centers, Holst Centre and Brightlands Material Center, were present at the exhibition area of RapidPro 2019. We have shown how we collaborate and serve the industry at the best way.
AMSYSTEMS Center and the Fieldlab partners were also on the RapidPro program by organising the Fieldlab MM3D network meeting on 13 March. Next to presentations from the Fieldlab partners Brightlands Materials Center and Océ about the latest developments, also other professionals in AM and in innovations programs gave an inspirational talk. Visitors also got an interesting presentation from three PhD candidates. They gave insight into their research ‘Additive Manufacturing for Ceramics’, which is one of the application area within Fieldlab MultiM-3D. The other two applications are dental and printed electronics. All in all it was great to be at the RapidPro.
More information, abstracts of presentations included, about the network meeting, please click here.
More information about the Fieldlab Multi-Material 3D, please click here.
The EFRO subsidized project Fieldlab Multi Material 3D (Fieldlab MM3D) is working on an approach to 3D print artificial colored teeth for dentures and crowns. The resulting technology may serve a billion euro market, provide better-looking results and massively reduce the amount of manual labor that goes into making dental prostheses.
The dental material is provided by NextDent and is suitable for 3D Printing. AMSYSTEMS Center integrates Océ’s color jetting technology with their mono color 3D dental printer.
On January 21st, 2019, the 3D Printed Electronics Conference took place at the High Tech Campus, Eindhoven. René van der Meer of Océ Research & Development represented Fieldlab MM3D and gave an inspirational talk about ‘Printing Realistic Teeth’, showing the first Multi- Material 3D printed objects (photo 1 and 2).
Photo 1. The four quadrants in this object is to check Photo 2. An object with two concentric circles the alignment of the printhead
These objects are jetted at a high temperature with two Océ printheads in a Fieldlab MM3D printer using industrial grade dental resins materials. This means Fieldlab MM3D has printed the world’s first multi-coloured objects with inkjet using two dental resins. In the next quarter coloring inks, developed by Brightlands Materials Center, will be tested together with the TNO Lepus SLA printer. The fieldlab project ends in September 2019.
From 31st of January to 1st of February, 2019, Katja Pahnke, managing director, and Roeland Brugman, Global Business Development Manager, presented AMSYSTEMS Center at the Holland High Tech Pavilion at NanoTech 2019 in Tokyo.
NanoTech is an international nanotechnology Exhibition & Conference. Next to showing visitors the innovations on additive manufacturing from our center Katja and Roeland have also welcome Prince Constantijn at the booth. During the Holland High Tech Seminar Katja participated in a joint interview together with Aaike van Vught (VS particale) and Jasper van Weerd (LipoCoat). It was at the fruitful and successful event.
As part of the broader Smart Industry, 3D printing is developing into a highly useful
alternative for product development and is also a relevant factor in existing manufacturing industry. Organizations need to take action now and 3D printing needs to be top-of-mind at management level in order to ensure that the added value of this technology is clear throughout the organization.
Wolter Kersbergen and Roger Quaedvlieg from PwC have held talks with than 20 companies in the wider manufacturing industry on how they are using 3D printing. This was coordinated from the ‘Multi-material 3D printing’ field lab’ – part of the nationwide Smart Industry initiative – to which they are affiliated. Wolter and Roger spoke to these companies about the challenges they face and the growing awareness of the potential and value of 3D printing. The aim of the research is to accelerate the adoption of 3D-printing by the industry. Wolter and Roger Hope that their White Paper ‘Beyond prototyping: accelerating the business case for 3D printing’ will contribute to achieving this.
A recent study conducted by Strategy& (part of PwC) reveals that the market for 3D printing products and technologies is set to grow to €22.6 billion by 2030. Currently, 18% of manufacturing companies are using 3D printing, and this figure is set to exceed 30% by 2023. These statistics show that companies will need to think hard about how they intend to successfully integrate 3D printing into their business models.
Most companies are aware of the advantages of 3D printing. These include design freedom, the fact that it is now technically possible to produce complex designs within a reasonable budget, a minimum batch size of one unit and a high level of flexibility within production until just before the point of use. However, many companies are postponing the move towards actually applying 3D printing as a production technology. In many cases, only part of the organization is aware of the possibilities. As a result, the added benefit for the entire value chain is often ignored and the true potential of this technology remains hidden.
The talks produced interesting insights into issues faced by companies in the process of making optimum use of the full potential of 3D printing. As is the case with many new digital technologies, 3D printing is about more than technology alone. This makes it the perfect subject for discussion at management and administrative level. How disruptive will 3D printing be and how will it transform the business model? To help companies with this, the White Paper includes a number of questions to assess where they are now and where any issues may lie. These questions, combined with the step-by-step plan, can help companies to unleash the potential of 3D printing.
Anton Aulbers is Senior Project Manager for Additive Manufacturing Equipment at the AMSYSTEMS Center that nestles at the fringe of the Eindhoven University of Technology campus where he is in the process of handing over the lead of the MultiM-3D Fieldlab to his colleague, Frits Feenstra. Both were in from the start, with Aulbers co-writing the proposal to establish the Multi-M3D as an umbrella for people to meet and connect and to facilitate a number of technology projects.
Trying out the technology
Feenstra, who is coordinating the ceramics activities, one of the three tracks currently providing the focus for the fieldlab’s technology development, explains how the fieldlab is set up. “We have different levels of membership within our umbrella. But they are all invited to attend the events and conferences we organize to promote the progress being made in the current tracks – dental applications, large-area ceramics, integrated electronics – as well as discuss the visions of where industry is heading and share ideas with each other. In essence, to explore the opportunities together.” This is one of the greatest values of a fieldlab, according to Aulbers. It’s a place where you can get hands-on with the very latest developments in technology to try out what these could mean in terms of products and services for the future. “In the arena of multi-material 3D printing, we provide a unique opportunity in the Netherlands for high-tech additive equipment manufacturers to experiment with techniques and materials, and push the technology forward.”
Funding is, of course, key to the continuity and continuation of the Multi-M3D fieldlab, and the competition for funding is intense. The main sources of funding for the Multi-M3D fieldlab are OPZuid, the European Regional fund for the South of the Netherlands and the Province of Noord Brabant. Other sources include European framework projects and the occasional project co-funding from industrial partners, although this is often expressed in kind rather in cash. “Having started in the Brabant area with its very strong high-tech sector, we are looking at how we can take this largely regional ecosystem we have developed into a more national arena and beyond to other countries where our contact base is growing. Interest in what we are doing is increasing.
“we provide a unique opportunity in the Netherlands for high-tech additive equipment manufacturers to experiment with techniques and materials, and push the technology forward.”
We now have more than 55 partners and their interests vary from software to design and legislation. It’s a truly multidisciplinary initiative and where our umbrella is unable to cater for the interests of our partners, we connect them to other forums and platforms,” Feenstra says. “I see our umbrella as a place to meet and greet, to network and to cross-fertilize. As one of its kind, it is a precious resource that has added value to both established and emerging additive equipment manufacturers. We are seeing growing attendance at our events, and that is, to a large extent, down to the success of the networking aspect. People tell others about the fieldlab and so they become inquisitive, asking themselves what is happening and what it could mean to their business.”
“Since the fieldlab is a place in which the worlds of fundamental and applied research mix with industry, it is important,” Feenstra stresses, “that we listen well to the demands from industry and that industry feeds the research with specific ingredients. In that way not only can we respond to real requirements but also give rein to invention and innovation. Smart industry is rapidly becoming part and parcel of our daily lives, and here we can put our responses to demand for personalization to the test, from 3D printed dentures to printed pasta shapes.”
“Yes, the Barilla pasta printer,” explains Aulbers, “is not actually a product facilitated by the fieldlab but it was a forerunner. It started as a kind of Friday afternoon activity where we toyed with the idea of printing pasta after the company sowed the germ of the idea. But in view of the publicity it got, and the fact that it demonstrated how additive manufacturing could successfully transform an idea to a product, it did serve to attract interest in and partners to the fieldlab.”
A very tangible result of where the Multi-M3D fieldlab did help to catalyze the transformation of a concept to product can be seen in the development of a denture whose appearance is ‘natural’. Océ-Technologies is working with TNO and NextDent to 3D print artificial colored teeth for dentures and crowns that will not only provide better-looking results but also significantly reduce the labor-intensive process involved in making dental prostheses. Feenstra explains. “To print natural-looking dentures, every voxel – that’s the 3D equivalent of a pixel – must be different in terms of color and transparency. It will soon be possible to print a complete tooth in less than 30 minutes and this is just the beginning. In the future, the biomedical applications of the technology could extend to printing skin or prostheses.” So far, the focus has been on developing the materials, hardware and software, but the first 3D dental objects are expected to be market ready by mid-2019.
“the fieldlab has access to the kind of knowledge and expertise that can help get the solutions to market more quickly. And for society to benefit faster.”
“We are making progress in the field of multi-material 3D printing but there is still some way to go,” Aulbers adds. “We’re getting there but the market also has to get there. Is it ready to take on board the technological breakthroughs and innovations that we are helping to facilitate? And what I mean by that is not the willingness of companies to adopt new technologies but the logjam of legislation and regulations that can hinder the exploitation of the solutions. So in that sense, the fieldlab could alleviate this burden through sharing knowledge and experience. After all, we have accumulated a vast wealth of experience over the past decade or so and having the university quite literally on our doorstep, the fieldlab has access to the kind of knowledge and expertise that can help get the solutions to market more quickly. And for society to benefit faster.”