Thanks, Elizabeth. Actually, it's not 3D printing of electronics, but printing of 3D electronics; the 3D printing applies to the wing they're printed on. Optomec's process parallels any other printed electronics, except that it's done in 3D instead of 2D. As we describe in the article, the printing technique is also called conformal printing, meaning it conforms to the surface it's printed on. When the Optomec print engine gets integrated into a 3D printer, then perhaps you could say the circuits are 3D printed.
This would be a real breakthroug and it's pretty incredible how close widespread use of this type of production just might be. Thanks for staying on top of it, Ann. It seems amazing that this could be possible, and I do wonder, however, how 3D printing all components of electrocnics might affect the quality of those products.
Thanks, Rob. Much of what I write about in 3D printing and robotics, although it may seem like the future, is actually only around the corner. I don't know about you, but my definition of "future" is getting more immediate and less distant.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
In a bid to boost the viability of lithium-based electric car batteries, a team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has developed a chemistry that could possibly double an EV’s driving range while cutting its battery cost in half.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.