A 3D-printed bioplastic ABS filament from Sierra Resins will be initially available in the typical ABS filament colors shown here -- including white, black, red, blue, yellow, and green -- plus transparent and a natural color. (Source: 3DPrintlife)
Good to see 'green' biodegradable materials being developed for the 3D printing industry. I remember when 3D printing first came out, some of the materials used were toxic and skin contact was to be avoided before the curing process. This new material development is an encouraging trend for our environment (especially as the world-wide use of 3D printing increases).
Ann, I was wondering if the line is compatible with printers from various vendors of 3D printers. Do they have to offer a selection of diameters and melting points and cooling profiles? Another question I have is whether there are printers for the home market that have high enough resolution to print clear plastic with a reasonably specular surface. Can they print a pair of lenses for sunglasses -- or a model airplane canopy?
In addition to 'green' 3D materials, I can also see more and more 'renewable' 3D materials being developed too. I believe that future formulations will be made from a higher percentage of renewable plastics (rather than from current, mostly petroleum-based polymers).
Agreed Greg. It reminds me of Emerging Objects doing some similar sort of work. I love the feeling that we are moving away from wasteful resources and trying to utilize as much renewable components as possible and unite our ideas into environment friendly solutions.
i agree with both you and Greg, Ann, it is really cool when these trends come together. 3D printing is so promising it's also good to see more environmentally friendly materials entering the mix. And of course you are on top of bringing us the latest!
So does the stuff only begin to degrade when placed in a landfill-? How does its ability to "breakdown" relate to its strength for the printed product-? You certainly would not want a printed output model to have some sort of a half-life.
Alcoa has unveiled a new manufacturing and materials technology for making aluminum sheet, aimed especially at automotive, industrial, and packaging applications. If all its claims are true, this is a major breakthrough, and may convince more automotive engineers to use aluminum.
NASA has just installed a giant robot to help in its research on composite aerospace materials, like those used for the Orion spacecraft. The agency wants to shave the time it takes to get composites through design, test, and manufacturing stages.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is working with architects Foster + Partners to test the possibility of using lunar regolith, or moon rocks, and 3D printing to make structures for use on the moon. A new video shows some cool animations of a hypothetical lunar mission that carries out this vision.
If there's one thing 3D printing's good for, it's customization. New Balance Athletic Shoe Company has begun using 3D printing to make customized spike plates for its running shoes made for members of its Team New Balance runners. They provide better traction and shave off a tiny bit of weight.
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