NASA is preparing to launch a 3D printer into space next year, a toaster-sized game changer that greatly reduces the need for astronauts to load up with every tool, spare part or supply they might ever need. The printers would serve as a flying factory of infinite designs, creating objects by extruding layer upon layer of plastic from long strands coiled around large spools.
It sits on your desktop and makes 3D models for you. 3D printer manufacturer MakerBot has created a $1400 digitizer that can scan objects in 3D. Set an object on the turntable, watch the laser and camera go to work, and then sent the scan to the 3D printer.
This Ford F750 World Cruiser pick-up truck, with its full living room, kitchen, bathroom, and enough beds for 6, was built by Dunkel Industries and cost $6 million to build. It also has 4 tons of cargo capacity, perfect for the driver who wants it all.
The buzz around wearable technology has been escalating the past several months. With this market gaining momentum, a key question needs to be addressed: How prepared are manufacturers to design and deliver these new and innovative types of products time and time again?
Lately, there has been a lot of buzz about the new and emerging technologies in manufacturing that are likely to produce major industry changes in the coming months and years. One such area of technology, as identified by the Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP) group, is remanufacturing.
3D printing is going further and further every day, and perhaps soon, to a galaxy far, far away. NASA is using 3D printing technology to build complicated rocket components faster and cheaper. NASA is currently testing a rocket engine, it's thruster produced by a 3D printer.
Among the teams competing in next month's 3000 kilometer World Solar Challenge race across Australia, is a group from the University of New South Wales that's built a solar-powered vehicle designed to look like a conventional car. In a field dominated by vehicles that look anything but conventional, the car provides a glimpse of what we could be driving on the roads in years to come.
As automakers race to make cheaper electric cars with greater battery range, General Motors is working on one that can go 200 miles per charge at a cost of about $30,000, a top company executive said. Vice President of Global Product Development Doug Parks wouldn't say when or if such a car will be built, however.
More than 40 state legislatures have debated the increasing presence of unmanned aircraft in civilian airspace, with most of the proposals focused on protecting people from overly intrusive surveillance by law enforcement. But Texas' law tips the scales in police favor — giving them broad freedoms to use drones during investigations and allowing them to bypass a required search warrant if they have suspicions of illegal activity.
In the early part of the 20th century, if you were buying a very expensive, luxury car, you'd probably commission a car to be made just for you. The 1928 Mercedes Saoutchik has seats covered in lizard skin, is powered by a 6.8 liter super-charged 6-cylinder engine, and recently sold for over $8 million.
Brothers Marc and Shanon Parker took their love for sci-fi and comic books and started Parker Brothers Concepts, where they manufacture outrageous, street-legal vehicles for Hollywood and TV shows. According to the Parkers, they build the "strange and unusual."
SpaceX is exploring methods for engineers to accelerate their workflow by designing more directly in 3D. The company is integrating breakthroughs in sensor and visualization technologies to view and modify designs more naturally and efficiently than by using purely 2D tools. SpaceX is just beginning, but eventually hopes to build the fastest route between the idea of a rocket and the reality of the factory floor.
Richard Van As, a South African carpenter, lost four fingers from his right hand to a circular saw two years ago. He was unable to afford the tens of thousands of dollars to get a myoelectric hand, so he decided to build his own. After seeing a video posted online of a mechanical hand made for a costume in a theater production, he reached out to its designer, Ivan Owen, in Seattle.
The 1935 Avions Voisin C25 Aerodyne was designed by an aviation designer and takes cues from airplanes of that era. The designer of the Voisin was originally an aviation designer and wanted to transfer aviation design to the automobile to create the best car he could. It recently sold at Pebble Beach for $1.925 million.
NASA has successfully tested a new kind of rocket engine component created using 3D printing. The engine injector was put through high-pressure, test firings of liquid oxygen and gaseous hydrogen, and it passed.
South Korean researchers have developed an electric car that folds in half for easy parking. Named for the armor-covered mammal of the same name, the 'Armadillo-T' is a two-seater prototype vehicle that is designed for commuters in busy urban areas. Reuters' Rob Muir has more.
A topic that doesn’t seem to come up, at least via outlets that are 3D-printer friendly (which are in a powerful majority at this point), is the proliferation of piracy thanks to the quickly emerging 3D-printer market. Much like Napster brought a slapped major record labels across the face, 3D printing is poised to make major manufacturers shake in their boots… maybe.
Nissan Motor Co. says it will make cars that drive themselves by 2020. The Japanese automaker made the pledge Tuesday at an event in California. CEO Carlos Ghosn has said before that he wants Nissan to be the first to sell self-driving cars. But Tuesday's announcement was more specific.
With the emergence of 3D printers into mainstream markets, what the devices actually do seems to matter less than what they will do, or could be made to do, in the future. Will they create a crisis of unregistered, undetectable firearms? Or will 3D printers become such a life-saving medical necessity that future consumers will regard the technology as unremarkable as the current practice of casting broken bones?
As new private ventures to take people on trips to space come closer to becoming reality, California lawmakers are racing other states to woo the new space companies with incentives. They are debating a bill now in Sacramento that would insulate manufacturers of spaceships and parts suppliers from liability should travelers get injured or killed on a voyage, except in cases such as gross negligence or intentional wrongdoing.
On the evening of April 20, 2010, Deepwater Horizon suffered a blowout while drilling in the Macondo Prospect, an area in the Gulf of Mexico 40 miles off the southeast coast of Louisiana. The platform caught fire; two days later, it sank.
Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk urged the public to polish sketch plans he released last week for a "Hyperloop" that would shoot capsules full of people at the speed of sound through elevated tubes connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco. From tinkerers to engineers, the race is on.
In the last twelve months, the compressor industry has seen the release of several innovative, patented air compressor technologies that significantly reduce energy consumption. These recent advancements derive from improvements throughout the compressor design and contribute to dramatic increases in energy efficiency.
The Chevrolet Corvette has always had a sort of image problem; it's been seen as a blue collar performance car and not a 'real' sportscar. Well, that hasn't been true in a very long time. The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray just might finally get the Corvette the recognition it deserves.
Nissan Motor Co. will offer a diesel engine in its reworked Titan full-size pickup truck, joining Chrysler's Ram with diesel powerplants in light-duty trucks. The Japanese automaker said Tuesday that a 300-plus horsepower, 5-Liter diesel engine made by Cummins will be available as an option on the next generation Titan.