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First Completely 3D-Printed Working Loudspeaker Built

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by Charles Q. Choi

Researchers for the first time have used 3-D printing to make a consumer electronic device, a loudspeaker ready for use almost as soon as it comes off the printer.

The work by roboticist Hod Lipson at Cornell University and his colleagues suggests 3-D printing might soon be mature enough to let people manufacture complete devices on demand.

"The exciting part of this project is that it paves the path to 3-D printing of consumer electronics and active systems," Apoorva Kiran, a Cornell mechanical engineer tells Txchnologist. "A good thing about 3-D printing inks that we developed at our lab is that even though they are for advanced applications, they are not hazardous chemicals, and their recipe is so simple that people can tinker with them even in their garage. With this work we hope that 3-D printing starts an era of open innovation."

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GE Begins Open Design & 3-D Printing Competition For Jet Engines, Healthcare

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by GE Reports

Many people still struggle with the idea of “printing” things by adding one layer of material on top of another, but Michael Idelchik, who runs GE’s advanced technologies research, is already talking about “printing large portions of jet engines.” GE Aviation, for example, is using lasers to print fuel nozzles for next-generation jet engines. The nozzles are 25 percent lighter and as much as five times more durable than the existing model welded from 20 different parts.

“We already know that it can be done, we’ve been playing with it for a while,” Idelchik says. “Now we want to develop an ecosystem of designers, engineers, materials scientists, and other partners who can learn with us. We have a number of products that we are going to be launching and we want to challenge people to get into business with us. If the ecosystem grows, the entire industry will grow.”

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Big Data Meets Industrial 3-D Printing

by Tomas Kellner, GE Reports

Even in the lofty world of aerospace components, GE’s new 3-D printed jet engine fuel nozzle is a rare bird. Workers build it as a single piece by welding together bits of superalloy dust with lasers. The new nozzle is 25 percent lighter and as much as five times more durable than the current nozzle made from 20 different parts.

But here’s the rub. 3-D printing is so new that engineers have to develop new quality-control methods before jumping into mass production. “We are dealing with a microscopic weld pool that’s moving at hundreds of millimeters per second,” says Todd Rockstroh, a mechanical engineer at GE Aviation. “Every cubic millimeter is a chance for a defect.”

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by Txchnologist Staff
Laser sintering is 3-D printing on steroids. The process is another form of additive manufacturing that shoots laser beams at metal powders to fuse particles together. As the powder bed is lowered, a new layer of particles is put on and then fused onto the emerging shape below it, slowly building up metal components and prototypes. The process, being employed by GE to make jet engine parts, produces little waste and allows for bespoke component designs on demand. See the video here.

by Txchnologist Staff

Laser sintering is 3-D printing on steroids. The process is another form of additive manufacturing that shoots laser beams at metal powders to fuse particles together. As the powder bed is lowered, a new layer of particles is put on and then fused onto the emerging shape below it, slowly building up metal components and prototypes. The process, being employed by GE to make jet engine parts, produces little waste and allows for bespoke component designs on demand. See the video here.

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