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Aug 18, 2011 12:00 AM
Now I have seen it all. Three-dimensional printing. I did not believe it, but below is a short video of how it works. The more technology advances, the more printing is redefined. Just check out the video put out by National Geographic on June 23, 2011, focused on 3D printing.
Z Corporation out of Burlington, MA, has created the Z-Printer that scans and copies items using two printer heads, high tech composite materials and a scanner. The part comes out fully manufactured, assembled and ready to go. This device looks like a printer, acts like a printer and, I guess, is a printer. Everyone was amazed when digital printing hit the industry, and now another innovation is blurring yet another industry, manufacturing. While most of us print in two dimensions, this printing device prints 3D and with moving parts. They have a printer head to color and a printer head to bind the composite. It starts with scanning the object, choosing the colors you want, and hitting print.
The original idea of this printer was for making parts during space exploration as traditional methods won’t work in space, but this opens up many opportunities to think outside the box to quickly produce objects as one would make multiple copies.
Just think how fast the printing industry has evolved over the past decade with variable data, QR Codes, PURLs, large format, and digital printing. Now we have 3D printing.