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SME Hosts First-Ever 3D Scan of Pittsburgh Bridge

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(PITTSBURGH, Oct. 26, 2016)SME, in connection with its RAPID + TCT 3D technology event, worked with FARO Technologies Inc., Direct Dimensions Inc. and the NextManufacturing Center at Carnegie Mellon University, to take the first-ever 3D scan of the Roberto Clemente Bridge. This scan will be used to create 3D-printed miniature replicas of the bridge, to be used as puzzle pieces at the RAPID + TCT event May 9 to 11 in Pittsburgh.

“RAPID + TCT 2017 showcases the latest growth and advancements in the additive manufacturing and 3D printing industry,” said Maria Conrado, SME event manager, RAPID + TCT. “The manufacturing industry is important to Pittsburgh, and it is exciting that we are using additive technology to reproduce 3D models of a special landmark in this city.”

3D Scan of Pittsburgh Bridge
An engineer captures data of Pittsburgh's iconic Roberto Clemente Bridge using a FARO Technologies Focus3D Laser Scanner. The data will be used in creating 3D-printed miniature replicas of the bridge.

FARO Technologies Inc. conducted the complete scan of the bridge resulting in a 3D point cloud. Direct Dimensions will be converting the raw laser scan data into a 3D CAD model of the bridge. This digital model will then be in the proper format needed to make the 3D-printed physical models, which will be featured at the RAPID + TCT event in May.

“3D scanning technologies allow physical objects to be captured and transformed into 3D digital models with incredible detail,” said Michelle Edwards, applications engineering manager, FARO Technologies. “Scanning something as recognizable as the Roberto Clemente Bridge can spark many conversations. People have never seen this bridge as a 3D point cloud. Once they see that, they begin to question their own processes. That's how innovation happens.”

Sandra DeVincent Wolf, executive director of the NextManufacturing Center at Carnegie Mellon University, participated in the event and noted that it symbolizes both the region’s deep history in manufacturing and its current position as a hub for 3D printing and other advanced manufacturing technologies.

To learn more about additive manufacturing and 3D technologies, visit sme.org/additive-manufacturing-glossary.

 

About RAPID + TCT

For over 25 years, RAPID has defined the crucial role of additive manufacturing and empowered the establishment of an industry that continues to conceive, test, improve and manufacture new products at a faster, more cost-efficient pace. The two industry leaders in 3D technology events, SME and The TCT Group, are teaming up to produce the annual RAPID + TCT event starting in 2017. For users and suppliers alike, the event will be the premier destination for those who provide technology and for those who need to understand, explore and adopt 3D printing, additive manufacturing, 3D scanning, CAD/CAE, metrology and inspection technologies. For more information, please visit rapid3devent.com. 

About the Roberto Clemente Bridge

Named for the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball player and Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente, the Roberto Clemente Bridge is one of three parallel bridges called The Three Sisters. The Three Sisters are self-anchored suspension bridges and are significant because they are the only trio of nearly identical bridges — as well as the first self-anchored suspension spans — built in the United States. Over 720 bridges link the city districts.

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If you have questions about the press release or need additional information, please contact SME Public Relations at communications@sme.org.