3D PRINTING NEWS (12/12/11) – World’s Smallest 3D Printer, Bone Printing, Copy of a Stradivarius Violin

New breakthroughs in 3D printing continue to close the gap between physical products and information products:

1. The World’s Smallest 3D Printer

“A research team at the Vienna University of Technology says it’s built a small, low-cost 3D printer that could soon make it into people’s homes. Unlike existing 3D printers, the Vienna prototype is no larger than a carton of milk. It weighs just 1.5 kilograms, and can be manufactured for only 1200 Euros. The team says the printer’s resolution is excellent… This means it can be used for applications which require extraordinary precision.” (link) 

2. Bone Printing

“It looks like bone. It feels like bone. For the most part, it acts like bone. And it came off an inkjet printer. Washington State University researchers have used a 3D printer to create a bone-like material and structure that can be used in orthopedic procedures, dental work and to deliver medicine for treating osteoporosis. Paired with actual bone, it acts as a scaffold for new bone to grow on and ultimately dissolves with no apparent ill effects.” (link)

3. Copied Stradivarius Violin

“A Stradivarius violin has been “recreated” using an X-ray scanner normally used to detect cancers and injuries, according to researchers. The US-based group used a computerised axial tomography (CAT) scanner on the 307-year-old instrument to reveal its secrets. They then used the data recovered to build “nearly exact copies”. The team said the technique could be used to give musicians access to rare musical equipment.” (link)


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