U.S. 1st 3D commercial ship under construction

by Fatima Bahtić

American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), Robert Allan (RAL), Signet Maritime Corporation and the United States Coast Guard (USCG) have developed a commercial vessel using an end-to-end 3D design process.

The vessel, which the companies claim is the U.S.-first, will receive its certificate of inspection from the USCG and will be built and operated by Signet to ABS Class.

As disclosed, the companies have developed the project using only 3D models in design and construction for all structures.

“This landmark achievement sets the bar for future projects both in the U.S. and internationally. Together with our forward-looking partners, we have realized a long-held dream of the industry to leave behind 2D paper plans and move to the next generation of vessel production,” said Christopher J. Wiernicki, ABS Chairman, President and CEO. 

Continue reading… “U.S. 1st 3D commercial ship under construction”

3D Printed, AI Controlled BioPods Can Grow Food in Space

Artistic depiction of BioPods deployed in space

By  Ameya Paleja

BioPods use inflatable membrane and need no supervision.

As we prepare for a future in space where crewed missions are expected to reach Mars and we begin settling on our Moon and other planets, the issue of supplying food in space crops up. Carrying large quantities of food aboard spacecraft might not be feasible and the environment on these space rocks is likely to be hostile to agriculture. French- American company Interstellar Lab may have found the right answer in their BioPods, the most advanced greenhouses ever built. 

Continue reading… “3D Printed, AI Controlled BioPods Can Grow Food in Space”


Three color 3D printed models created using the team’s new ML software. Image via Charles University. 


Researchers from Charles University’s Computer Graphics Group (CGG) have developed a machine learning (ML)-based technique that could help unlock the potential of high fidelity color 3D printing.

By continually simulating the printing process, the team have managed to train an algorithm to iteratively find the optimal parameters for limiting color bleeding, and improving part accuracy. The program is ultra-efficient too, requiring only one GPU, making it up to 300 times faster than similar AI approaches, while reducing print preparation times from tens of hours down to just a couple of minutes. 


Wake Forest teams win a NASA prize for 3D printing human liver tissue

By A. Tarantola

Skinks think they’re just sooooo cool. Through no shortage of effort on our part, humans still lack the physiological capacity to regrow lost limbs and damaged organs. Well, we didn’t until this week, at least. A pair of research teams from Wake Forest University’s Institute for Regenerative Medicine have topped NASA’s long-running Vascular Tissue Challenge by 3D printing a biologically viable chunk of human liver.

The teams, respectively dubbed Winston and WFIRM, each managed to produce a centimeter-square hunk-o-meat capable of surviving and nominally operating for a span of 30 days, albeit using divergent methodologies. Yeah, granted, even NASA admits that both teams relied on similar “3D printing technologies to create gel-like molds, or scaffolds, with a network of channels designed to maintain sufficient oxygen and nutrient levels to keep the constructed tissues alive,” they differed on their printing designs and materials. 

Continue reading… “Wake Forest teams win a NASA prize for 3D printing human liver tissue”

Super productive 3D bioprinter could help speed up drug development

The high-throughput 3D bioprinting setup performing prints on a standard 96-well plate. Credit: Biofabrication

by University of California – San Diego

A 3-D printer that rapidly produces large batches of custom biological tissues could help make drug development faster and less costly. Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego developed the high-throughput bioprinting technology, which 3-D prints with record speed—it can produce a 96-well array of living human tissue samples within 30 minutes. Having the ability to rapidly produce such samples could accelerate high-throughput preclinical drug screening and disease modeling, the researchers said.

The process for a pharmaceutical company to develop a new drug can take up to 15 years and cost up to $2.6 billion. It generally begins with screening tens of thousands of drug candidates in test tubes. Successful candidates then get tested in animals, and any that pass this stage move on to clinical trials. With any luck, one of these candidates will make it into the market as an FDA approved drug.

The high-throughput 3-D bioprinting technology developed at UC San Diego could accelerate the first steps of this process. It would enable drug developers to rapidly build up large quantities of human tissues on which they could test and weed out drug candidates much earlier.

Continue reading… “Super productive 3D bioprinter could help speed up drug development”

Norwegian Robotics Firm to Develop Underwater 3D Printer

by Michael Molitch-Hou

A Norwegian robotics firm called Kongsberg Ferrotech, which creates subsea robots for the oil and gas industry, is developing a form of underwater 3D printing for repairing pipelines below the sea. To develop the process, known as “Subsea Additive Manufacturing for Lifetime Extension”, the company is working with Equinor, SINTEF, and Gassco.

Kongsberg Ferrotech offers several robots that perform inspection, repair and maintenance (IRM) of subsea equipment. This includes a system called Nautilus, which remotely repairs pipelines using composite materials. Nautilus has passed deepwater testing in the Trondheim Fjord in Norway and the company plans to begin commercial operations in the Southeast Asian market in Q3 20201. Footage of how this process works can be seen in the video below:

Continue reading… “Norwegian Robotics Firm to Develop Underwater 3D Printer”


Cali-based digital manufacturing company Hacked has partnered with Siemens PLM software to create the world’s first car designed in virtual reality, engineered with AI and 3D printed, full size, in structural alloy.

The ‘La Bandita’ speedster is intended to serve as proof of concept for an entirely new industrial design to production methodology. Hackrod’s factory of the future, powered by the Siemens Digital Innovation Platform, will enable individuals, start-ups and small enterprises the unprecedented capability to create the product or their needs or dreams as easily as playing a video game.

With multiple tools from Siemens PLM Software including NX software, and the new cloud-based collaboration software Solid Edge Portal, Hackrod has access to the latest design and engineering tools to rapidly design, test and manufacture transport solutions without the need for massive industrial infrastructure or tooling budgets.

Hackrod is developing a platform to enable truly bespoke aesthetic design to prevail with guaranteed engineering solutions. Their platform leverages virtual reality as a design tool, IoT and machine learning to constantly evolve and perfect engineering systems, and industrial 3D printing to produce optimized hardware.


3D printing stem cells to transform neuroscience

by Barbara Ricco

3D printing, also called additive manufacturing, has become widespread in recent years. By building successive layers of raw material such as metals, plastics, and ceramics, it has the key advantage of being able to produce very complex shapes or geometries that would be nearly impossible to construct through more traditional methods such as carving, grinding, or molding.

The technology offers huge potential in the health care sector. For example, doctors can use it to make products to match a patient’s anatomy: a radiologist could create an exact replica of a patient’s spine to help plan surgery; a dentist could scan a patient’s broken tooth to make a perfectly fitting crown reproduction. But what if we took a step further and apply 3D printing techniques to neuroscience?

Stems cells are essentially the body’s raw materials; they are pluripotent elements from which all other cells with specialized functions are generated. The development of methods to isolate and generate human stem cells, has excited many with the promise of improved human cell function understanding, ultimately utilizing them for regeneration in disease and trauma. However, the traditional two-dimensional growth of derived neurones—using flat petri dishes—presents itself as a major confounding factor as it does not adequately mimic in vivo three-dimensional interactions, nor the myriad developmental cues present in real living organisms.

Continue reading… “3D printing stem cells to transform neuroscience”

Europe’s biggest concrete 3D printer creates the home of tomorrow

By Julian GOMEZ  

The campus of experimental Architecture in Belgium is home to the World’s ´first single-piece concrete 3D printed house.

Europe’s largest concrete 3D printer was used to build the two-storey, 90 square metre dwelling.

The very same printer is now being used by students to develop new sustainable building solutions for Europe’s construction industry.

Charlotte Van Antenaeken a student on a project using this printer from the Thomas More Hogeschool in Belgium tells us that “with this technology, we were able to print a whole house. Now we want to move on, and use this 3D printer in efficient ways to create new proposals”.

Her project is focusing on how they can print surfaces with stronger architectural structures that can withstand more weight.

Continue reading… “Europe’s biggest concrete 3D printer creates the home of tomorrow”

NCSU researchers’ 3D-printable jelly could boost biomedical materials

Researchers develop a 3D-printable jelly that is strong and flexible. Photo courtesy of Orlin Velev, NC State University.

by Mick Kulikowski .

RALEIGH – 3D-printable gels with improved and highly controlled properties can be created by merging micro- and nano-sized networks of the same materials harnessed from seaweed, according to new research from North Carolina State University. The findings could have applications in biomedical materials – think of biological scaffolds for growing cells – and soft robotics.

Described in the journal Nature Communications, the findings show that these water-based gels – called homocomposite hydrogels – are both strong and flexible. They are composed of alginates – chemical compounds found in seaweed and algae that are commonly used as thickening agents and in wound dressings.

Merging different-size scale networks of the same alginate together eliminates the fragility that can sometimes occur when differing materials are merged together in a hydrogel, says Orlin Velev, S. Frank and Doris Culberson Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NC State and corresponding author of the paper.

Continue reading… “NCSU researchers’ 3D-printable jelly could boost biomedical materials”

Drone mass production is taking off with 3D printing

How Skydio, Digital Aerolus, Quantum Systems, Kespry and Dive Technologies are printing hundreds of parts

 By Davide Sher

Personal and unmanned mobility is rapidly changing as drones bring us closer and closer to humanity’s long-standing vision of flying cars.

Amolak Badesha, CEO of Orbital Composites, a specialist in large-scale composites additive manufacturing, once pointed out to 3dpbm that this new generation of mobility products will not be able to exist without composites enabling the production of extremely light parts. And mass manufacturing with composites materials cannot truly exist without 3D printing.

The same is true for more short-term products, such as unmanned drones for consumer and commercial use, both in the sky and under the sea: drone mass production via AM is coming.

Continue reading… “Drone mass production is taking off with 3D printing”

Dutch Firm Builds First Commercial House Printed With 3D Technology

Shaped like a boulder, the house is surrounded by greenery and open space on each side

The three-room single-storey house is spread across 1,000 square feet and has a wooden roof.


  • These houses are intended to be occupied for at least several decades
  • 3D concrete printing allows builders to design fine concrete structures
  • The work on the project began during the 2016 Dutch Design Week
Continue reading… “Dutch Firm Builds First Commercial House Printed With 3D Technology”