What I learned at AMUG 2018!

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Recently we were able to participate and attend the annual Additive Manufacturing User Group(AMUG) Conference. This was my first year attending and I had a blast! The booths were fun to explore with many different printers and complimentary solutions. In our booth we had a Stratasys F170 the first day and a Desktop Metal Studio printer the rest of the week. As complimentary solutions, we also had a Roland MDX-50 benchtop CNC milling machine, and a variety of Creaform 3D scanners. There were also many great presentations. Here are some notes on some of my favorites.

  1. 3D Printing is a Transformative Technology in Medicine by Shafkat Anwar from Washington University in St Louis School of Medicine

3D printing is being used for presurgical planning and saving lives because doctors are able to prepare for each individual surgery. This is giving patients and their families more confidence in the doctors and helping them understand the problems and solutions better.

  1. Additive Manufacturing Across Industry – The Good, The Bad, The Next Generation

This was a panel discussion with Michael Hayes from Boeing, Tracy Bailey from FedEx, Ellen Lee from Ford, Sameer Desai from Johnson & Johnson, and Aaron Frankel from Siemens. Here are some of the common thoughts across the different industries. While 3D printing allows for more complex parts, a lot of testing needs to be done to build confidence in additive manufacturing. This is especially important in aerospace and automotive industries. Another factor they all agreed with is that there needs to much more education in how to design for 3D printing.

  1. Hybrid Manufacturing of Bi-Metallic Liquid Rocket Engine Igniter by Steve Burlingame from NASA

This igniter has been test fired successfully 33 times by NASA MSFC in July 2017. The machine it was built on was a blown powder metal printer that had an integrated machining/grinding capability. It could also do a single build with multiple alloys!

  1. Foundry in a Box by Jack Ziemba from Aristo Cast

This was a fun hands on demo involving melting tin in a microwave. DON’T TRY AT HOME UNLESS YOU HAVE RESEARCHED HOW TO DO IT WITHOUT RUINING YOUR MICROWAVE!! To quote one of the presenters, “If you don’t do this right, you will be buying your EX-wife a new microwave.” We then used the molten tin to create investment castings and sand castings.

Chad Whitbeck
Reverse Engineering Specialist
Computer Aided Technology, Inc