These injection molded filters made for the medical market have more than 1,000 76-micron (0.003 inches) squares with wall thicknesses of 0.006 inches. "The previous way to make a filer was to run a metal mesh through an injection mold and then mold a frame around it," comments Donna Bibber, vice president of sales at Miniature Tool & Die. The trend to minimally invasive surgery is triggering a boom for micro components that travel through blood vessels. "Everywhere we turn there is a challenge we have to overcome,"
comments Bibber, a plastics engineer. Example: MTD had to develop a 7-gram hopper for resin drying. Conventional dryer hoppers are in the 150- to 200-lb range. "Also, we don't always have the luxury of a surface we can eject on to," she adds. MTD often ejects from runners or gates. For more information, go to http://rbi.ims.ca/4922-503.
The company says it anticipates high-definition video for home security and other uses will be the next mature technology integrated into the IoT domain, hence the introduction of its MatrixCam devkit.
Siemens and Georgia Institute of Technology are partnering to address limitations in the current additive manufacturing design-to-production chain in an applied research project as part of the federally backed America Makes program.
Most of the new 3D printers and 3D printing technologies in this crop are breaking some boundaries, whether it's build volume-per-dollar ratios, multimaterials printing techniques, or new materials types.
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