Learning Labs Focus on Materials & 3D Printing

Next month, the UBM Canon Pacific Design & Manufacturing Show in Anaheim, Calif., will feature something new: 30 Learning Labs, each two hours long. The sessions will be aimed at attendees of that show, as well as co-located events, including MD&M West, ATX West, PLASTEC West, AeroCon, Electronics West, and WestPack.

Spread over three days, the Learning Labs include a variety of subjects. You can access the detailed schedule here. Today I’m going to tell you a bit about the materials and 3D printing sessions. I’ll cover sessions on assembly and robotics subjects in a second blog.

On Tuesday, February 11, there’s a session on 3D Printing Capabilities, with three speakers from Stratasys. Bruce Bradshaw, director of marketing, will give an overview of 3D printing and rapid-prototyping capabilities. He will talk about current applications and multi-materials developments. Susan York, North American business manager, will discuss how to evaluate the costs and feasibility of buying printers for use in-house and how to integrate them into existing systems. Applications engineer Steve Gibson will talk about some of the crazier claims, such as 3D-printing eyeballs and livers, and give an assessment of what’s actually possible with the technology. He’ll also talk about new materials and the practicality of consumers using the technology at home.

Another Tuesday Learning Lab on materials is about Materials & Technology for Implantable Devices. Talks in this session begin with Chander Chawla, director of biomedical polyurethanes for DSM, who will review assessment processes for biostable polyurethanes. Next, James Hedrick, advanced organic materials scientist for IBM Research, looks at technologies and strategies for reducing the risk of infection, such as implant coatings. Xiao-Yan Gong, president of Medical Implant Mechanics, winds up the Learning Lab with a discussion of integrating technologies in order to design and manufacture durable medical implants.

On Wednesday, February 12, a Learning Lab on Innovations in Materials for Packaging begins with Dell’s director of packaging procurement, Oliver Campbell, giving a presentation on trends in alternative materials, such as algae, bamboo, and moldable pulp. Ramin Heydarpour, managing partner at Flex R&D, talks about creating value in packaging through the use of printed electronics. The session concludes with Chris Tilton, CTO of Smart Planet Technologies, discussing mineralized coating technologies for paperboard for food and other barrier-sensitive products.

Later that day there’s another 3D printing Learning Lab, Advanced Applications of 3D Printing. Siemens PLM Software’s director of third-party ecosystems for mainstream engineering, Mark Burhop, leads the session with a talk on new materials, including composites, as well as materials that let engineers skip prototyping and go straight to the manufacturing floor. Next is Boris Fritz, engineer 5 — prod ops manufacturing technology development with Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. His presentation looks at the nanomanufacturing end of additive manufacturing and at 3D printing’s role in aerospace applications. The last speaker is Autodesk’s Lizzie Bennett, manufacturing industry group manager.

The Learning Labs conclude on Thursday, February 13. That day features a session on New Capabilities of Bioresorbable Polymers. This begins with a presentation by SuPing Lyu, senior principal scientist for Medtronic Cardiac Rhythm Disease Management, discussing different ways to increase the strength of bioresorbable polymers by changing processing technologies. Kurt Breitenkamp, managing scientist for polymer science and materials chemistry with Exponent Inc., concludes the Learning Lab with a talk on methods for tailoring polymer properties and biomedical degradation characteristics to the device’s function.

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