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3DHubs is one of the first companies which caught our eye. There are a lot of companies building fast and better printers. 3DHubs is unique because they’re seen as the world’s “largest peer-to-peer network” of 3D printing services.
This isn’t the only thing they provide, but this is their foundation. They also pride themselves on being cheaper and faster. Think of 3DHubs as a 3D printer facilitator. They assist in producing products at a cheaper and faster rate while connecting different 3D printing hubs.
Services which distinguish 3DHubs is its CNC machine service, sheet metal fabrication service, and injection molding service. The CNC machine service they provide allows customers to order low-cost parts around the world and order custom parts.
Their sheet metal fabrication lets users order metal with fast delivery and cost efficiency. The injection molding service is similar to their sheet metal fabrication. You order, get a quote, and receive your injection molded part in a reasonable amount of time.
Looking at 3DHubs services, you can basically create your own 3D printer at a much lower cost than market rate. This is why I think of 3DHubs as a facilitator. They’re proliferating the use of 3D printed products, printers, and services.
We’ve talked about the future of 3D printing before. But, to actually see companies like this? This is the type of stuff you thought was possible way into the future.
CELLINK isn’t primarily a 3D printing company. They’re a company dedicated to revolutionizing medicine with different technology.
They use what’s called CNC (computer numerical control). This is a machine process which is used in the whole production process of “extrusion-based bioprinting”. Instead of using filament like ABS or PLA, this printer uses “bio-compatible material”.
Material like this can be used to make surgical instruments, or, hopefully in the future, human organs. This type of machine will be used for the future of tissue engineering.
They use light-based bioprinters like LUMENX and HOLOGRAPH X. You can check it out on their page on engineering tissue models.
The whole purpose of these printers are to help with research because of their advantages. These printers retain fluid better, display higher resolution, and are fast.
This is another ambitious company. They’re mission is to revolutionize the way rockets are built and flown. The overall vision is to help make humans an interplanetary species.
They’re doing this by combining 3D printing, A.I, and robotics. As you can tell, Relativity Space isn’t a 3D printing company. They’re just using 3D printers to create rockets like the Terran 1 rocket.
The complexity of building a rocket can’t be understated. You need people who know material engineering, physics, software, and more. Thankfully, they’re using the printers to make about 95% of the rocket. 3D printers aren’t only making it easier to make rockets, they’re making it easier to turn raw materials into a rocket.
Not only is Relativity Space trying to bring us to Mars, they’re changing the whole creation of rockets. The process takes a long time. Using 3D printers accelerates the process. Instead of using hundreds of thousands of parts, they’re using less than a thousand parts.
Instead of 2 years, they’re looking at 2 months. They’re disrupting the whole build process using 3D printers. A good theme for 3D printers in this article is when they’re inserted into an industry, they’re not just changing one part of the value chain, they’re disrupting multiple parts.
Organovo is similar to CELLINK in its use of 3D printing. They use 3D models to replicate disease processes and other aspects of drug discovery.
3D bioprinting makes it easier to recreate tissue pattern similar to human biology. Essentially, 3D bioprinted tissue makes it easier to observe in comparison to 2D structures. Imagine the detail between a photo of a building and virtual reality of a building. You get more detail with the virtual reality option. With the photo, you can only see one aspect. With virtual reality, you can hover around the building from different perspectives.
3D bioprinting takes additive manufacturing to a different level. It uses cells and other material also known as “bioinks”. Bioinks help proliferate living cells. They’re like the engine for starting and growing cells to eventually grow into working human tissue.
The mission for CleanGreen3D is creating eco-friendly 3D printers. They’re based in Ireland which is rare considering a lot of these high-tech companies are located in tech hubs like Silicon Valley or Singapore.
Their 3D printer is full color dedicated to a variety of people. The CG-1 Printer is made out of paper instead of metal or plastic. What’s interesting about this is a lot of the printers we review are made out of metal. Paper printers might seem delicate, but they’re actually durable considering their design.
From design to printing, this printer is all about the environment. Using these printers means you have a clean outcome when done printing.
You don’t need to clean the model, or deal with annoying post-processing problems. A lot of this clean process comes from the material it uses. It uses paper, ink, and glue for the printing process.
The type of printing technology the CG-1 uses is SDL (Selective Deposition Lamination). A couple advantages paper has over PLA and ABS is one we already talked about. Wastefulness is one, and the other advantage is you can create different types of models you couldn’t with plastic material.