A new Wohlers Report reveals that the rapid prototyping industry last year reversed its downward trend as revenues returned to levels of the past. "Low-end machine sales soared to unprecedented heights, with 3D printers becoming the crown jewel of the RP industry," says Terry Wohlers, principal author of the report and president of Wohlers Associates Inc. In the report, Wohlers explained that Stratasys is inching its way toward dominance as it unseats 3D Systems as the king of rapid prototyping machinery. And Z Corporation has moved up to the number two position in annual unit sales. Meanwhile, the U.S.continues to maintain its grip on both the production and consumption of RP systems. A table of contents, as well as additional information on the RP market and industry, are available at http://rbi.ims.ca/3850-574.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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