Mar-Bal Inc. has merged its AltraSet Composite Technologies company with Lattice Composites, Riverside, Calif.
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Terry Wohlers, a renowned expert on additive manufacturing, and Bruce Morey, Senior Technical Editor for SME’s Manufacturing Engineering Magazine, discuss the present and future of AM in the medical and dental fields. Applications are discussed and skepticism addressed as the industry anticipates RAPID + TCT in Anaheim April 20-23 and the Additive Manufacturing for Medical Yearbook SME will publish in April.
Additive manufacturing lets companies think “outside the box.” Engineers can now start to look at a part without restrictions on size, shape or material. Instead of taking 15 different CNC milled parts and brazing them together, these companies have reimagined the part entirely—to be built as one part.
Beginning around six years ago, one machine tool builder after another added laser cutting and even welding to their products’ already impressive repertoires.
Manufacturing Engineering last covered the pluses and minuses of combining additive and subtractive machining in detail in July 2017.
Over the past decade, IMTS has been a good indicator of the changing status of additive manufacturing. The show’s floor space devoted to 3D printing expanded from 2014 to 2018, reaching pavilion status at the most recent show. It had been scheduled to grow even more at IMTS 2020 before the show’s cancellation.
Processed Metal Innovators LLC (PMI), Bloomer, Wis., is a metal fabricator that produces hundreds of different stamped and welded metal parts for heavy equipment, automobiles, appliances, and more.
To stay current with technology and peer into the future of manufacturing, take a look at our preview of IMTS—The International Manufacturing Technology Show, to be held at McCormick Place in Chicago from Sept. 10 through Sept. 15. In the following pages, ME provides in-depth examinations of each pavilion at IMTS, as well as previews of the products you will be able to see displayed at exhibitors’ booths.
Additive manufacturing (AM) pioneer Charles Hull introduced the first commercial 3D printer, the SLA-1, in 1987. Jaws dropped, machinists wondered about their next career, pundits said it spelled the death of traditional manufacturing. None of that happened, thankfully; in fact, some said 3D printing was a bunch of hype, good for little more than investment casting patterns and proof of concept prototypes.
The world of additive manufacturing (AM), commonly referred to as 3D printing, is quickly changing. The technology allows companies to manufacture products faster, with greater variation, and often with entirely new forms and functions.