Motorola Mobility, a Google company, is building a 3D printed modular phone, and has partnered with 3D Systems for commercial fulfillment. More »
The Captured Dimensions pop-up studio was located in the Smithsonian Castle and featured approximately 80 digital cameras all connected to 3D software. More »
Microsoft expanded their support for 3D printing by launching a Windows 8 app called 3D Builder. It includes a library of objects you can edit and 3D print. More »
3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) announced the availability of the Sense 3D scanner, the first 3D scanner designed for the consumer and optimized for 3D printing. More »
3D Printing Week
Here is a roundup of the top 3D printing news from last week.
The Smithsonian Institution announced a landmark new program called Smithsonian X 3D that allows anyone to digitally explore and 3D print some of the museum’s most iconic collections. We interviewed the key Smithsonian team members involved with this project, and showcased a 3D Photo Booth that presented at the launch.
3D Systems announced a partnership with Google’s Motorola Mobility to 3D print a new modular smartphone.
A dad developed and 3D printed a custom prosthetic hand for under $10 on a MakerBot 3D printer.
We analyzed why bioprinting firm Organovo’s stock (ONVO) took a tumble; spoiler alert: too much media attention.
MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis will be keynoting a leadership dinner at CES 2014.
And much more!
Tuesday, November 19
Wednesday, November 20
- Smithsonian X 3D Launches with Emphasis on Outreach and Digital Preservation
- Interview with Smithsonian X 3D Team about 3D Printing Initiative
Thursday, November 21
Friday, November 22
Saturday, November 23
Sunday, November 24
A prosthetic hand costs $30,000, so how did a dad from Massachusetts create one for his son for only $10? He used open-source plans and a 3D printer.
Leon McCarthy was born with his fingers missing on his left hand. Under normal medical care, a prosthetic hand would have cost upwards of $30,000, and would obviously need to be replaced many times as he grew up.
Leon’s dad, Paul McCarthy, decided to turn to 3D printing for an innovative solution. A designer in Washington developed open-source plans for a prosthetic hand that could be made at home. So McCarthy bought himself a MakerBot 3D printer, tuned the model to fit his son’s arm, and 3D printed Leon a new hand.
At first Leon thought his dad was a little crazy, but now thinks his did is pretty awesome.
And Paul, likewise is just proud that he can make his son happy. “It’s the best thing,” said Paul.
Here is a photo of Leon posing with MakerBot co-founder and CEO Bre Pettis at a MakerBot store event.
Watch this segment from CBS Evening News to meet Leon and his dad Paul McCarthy and hear their amazing story.
Google’s Modular Phone Gets 3D Printed
In May 2012, Google acquired Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion, marking a transition for Google from search engine to consumer electronics manufacturer. After a period of turnaround and renewal, the Motorola Mobility unit of Google has launched smartphones like the Moto X and Moto G.
Now Motorola Mobility, a Google company, has unveiled plans for its most ambitious project: a 3D printed modular smartphone.
The company announced Project Ara in late October as a “free, open hardware platform for creating highly modular smartphones.” In a blog post, Motorola Mobility’s Paul Eremenko wrote, “We want to do for hardware what the Android platform has done for software: create a vibrant third-party developer ecosystem, lower the barriers to entry, increase the pace of innovation, and substantially compress development timelines.”
And in the most recent update to Project Ara, 3D Systems has been selected as the 3D printing partner for the new phone.
3D Systems Wins the Google Contract
3D Systems announced that it has entered into a multi-year development agreement with Motorola Mobility LLC, A Google Company, to create a continuous high-speed 3D printing production platform and fulfilment system in support of Motorola’s Project Ara.
“With Project Ara, we asked the question, ‘How do we bring the benefits of customization and an open hardware ecosystem to 6 billion people?’ That is our driving application. It requires technical advances in areas such as material strength and printing with conductive inks for antennas. And those advances must support production-level speeds and volumes, which is a natural partnership with 3D Systems,” said Regina Dugan, Senior Vice President and head of Motorola’s Advanced Technology & Projects group.
“Project Ara was conceived to build a platform that empowers consumers all over the world with customization for a product made by and for the individual,” said Avi Reichental, President and CEO of 3D Systems. “3D printing promotes a level of sustainability, functionality, and mass personalization that turns these kinds of global ambitions into attainable local realities. Project Ara combines two exponential technologies, and we expect that the resulting high-throughput advanced manufacturing platform will have far reaching implications on the entire digital thread that stitches together the factory of the future.”
As part of this agreement, 3D Systems plans to substantially expand its multi-material printing capabilities including conductive and functional materials. The company also plans to combine additive and subtractive manufacturing methods, and deliver an integrated high-speed production platform. Pending successful completion of the development phase, 3D Systems is expected to manufacture 3D-printed Ara smartphone enclosures and modules as Motorola’s exclusive fulfillment partner.
Motorola and 3D Systems, the inventors of the cell phone and 3D printer, respectively, have previously partnered on the MAKEwithMOTO tour, a series of make-a-thons at the nation’s top engineering and design schools aimed at exploiting the power of open, hackable smartphone hardware and 3D printing to begin seeding an open hardware ecosystem.
Learn more about Project Ara at www.makewithmoto.com.
Bioprinting Pioneer Battles in the Stock Market as it Looks Ahead to a Major Milestone
As we have covered in the past, Organovo specializes in Bioprinting. The company designs and creates functional, three-dimensional human tissues for medical research and therapeutic applications. The Company collaborates with pharmaceutical and academic partners to develop human biological disease models in three dimensions. These 3D human tissues have the potential to accelerate the drug discovery process, enabling treatments to be developed faster and at lower cost.
This savings amounts to a multi-billion dollar opportunity for changing the way Big Pharma discovers drug therapies. Drug companies will be able to test on 3D printed human tissue in a lab before they even embark on the FDA approval process with animal trials, saving hundreds of millions of dollars.
With all of this promise, why does Organovo only have a $700 million market capitalization? 3D Systems and Stratasys are two other public 3D printing companies that boast multi-billion dollar market caps.
Moreover, why did Organovo climb to an all-time high of $13.65 last week, only to crash nearly 40%?
Pictured above: ONVO year-to-date stock chart. Click to enlarge.
The answer is two-fold.
First, Organovo is early in its product roadmap, and has yet to realize much revenue.
Second, the price of the stock is being heavily influenced by the media.
Organovo Product Roadmap
In September, Organovo CEO Keith Murphy shared his company’s future roadmap:
- Development and launch of 3D Liver
- Scientific proof of concept – April 2013
- Functional validation: testing against known drugs – December 2013
- Delivery to KOLs: alpha and beta testing – April 2014
- Product launch – December 2014
- Follow on cell assay product launches
- Multiple additional pharma partnerships
- Developed disease models
- Cancer model readouts over 12-24 months: kidney, others
- Therapeutic tissue proof of concept and path to clinical
Note that there is a key milestone coming in December to demonstrate functional validation. Organovo has scheduled a retail investor conference for December 5 to discuss product pipeline and revenue potential, partnership model, cash burn and R&D spend, and more.
Read the full agenda in Organovo’s press release.
Be Careful About the Media
Because ONVO has a relatively small market cap and 3D printing is a concentrated industry, one highly negative or positive story can make a difference in the markets.
Case in point: Seeking Alpha contributor Richard Pearson wrote an article called A Very Detailed Look at Organovo on November 19, saying “Investors should therefore expect the share price to quickly return to below $7.00, where it was prior to over a dozen promotional articles on Organovo released in the past few weeks.”
On that day, the stock fell 40%. Luckily for Mr. Pearson, he was shorting the stock as it read in his disclosure.
If you look across Seeking Alpha as one example of a site sharing investment advice, there has been a lot of attention paid to ONVO by contributors. There is even an article entitled Organovo At the Mercy Of The Media.
The takeaway is that investors need to be aware of this media-drive volatility and be prepared to have short-term pops and crashes until Organovo demonstrates, or fails to live up to, the achievements set out on its roadmap.
2014 will be an important year for the Bioprinting pioneer!
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, the author is long ONVO. Please consult your financial advisor on all investment decisions.
This article was written by Lisa Perez, a regular contributor to On 3D Printing.
As part of the Smithsonian’s X 3D launch, the museum hosted a two-day conference this past week to discuss its 3D initiatives and showcase the work of its Digitization Program Office and outside partners. Among these, the Dallas-based Captured Dimensions team proved itself to be a leader in 3D photo imaging with a pop-up studio that delighted attendees and rendered 3D captures in extremely high fidelity.
The Captured Dimensions pop-up studio was located in the Smithsonian Castle and featured approximately 80 digital cameras arranged in a dome formation, all connected to 3D imaging software. By triggering the cameras simultaneously, the Captured Dimensions is able to capture live subjects in 3D virtually instantly and in 360 degrees. The experience is as quick and easy for the subject as taking a picture, and action shots are definitely an option.
Captured Dimensions CEO Jordan Williams explained during the X 3D expo that “the general process gives you the ability to capture living subjects that are difficult to scan using other methods and to capture other objects that are outside of a traditional scale.”
The Smithsonian’s X 3D Expo attendees made full use of this capability, by posing for a range of 3D captures that included yoga poses, head stands, ballet moves and jump shots.
On Wednesday morning, the Captured Dimensions team kicked off the expo by taking an official 3D portrait of Secretary of the Smithsonian Dr. G. Wayne Clough which was processed and digitally imaged that day, and then 3D printed into a scaled full color replica the next day by fellow exhibitor 3D Systems.
The Smithsonian subsequently confirmed that this portrait marks the first official 3D capture and rendering of a sitting Smithsonian Secretary.
Indeed, at the time of this writing, it appears that the official 3D printed portrait of Secretary Clough is the first of its kind for a federal secretary, and could even present a potential solution to recent debates over the high cost of traditional portraits of government officials. Currently, a scaled full body figurine from Captured Dimensions can be obtained for as little as $399 for a 1/12 scaled print, and $199 for reprints, while a recent oil on canvas portrait of Air Force Secretary Michael Donnelly is reported to have cost $41,200.
With the growing popularity of 3D imaging and portraiture, even Queen Elizabeth II is getting in on the action, so it stands to reason that a new tradition of 3D portraiture among high ranking US government officials can’t be too far behind.
For Captured Dimensions, the opportunity to take Secretary Clough’s portrait comes on the heels of exciting collaborations with Abilene Christian University’s Maker Lab (ACU Maker Lab), and New York-based fashion innovator Francis Bitonti.
The ACU Maker Lab project consisted of scanning and digitizing an 8-foot maquette of ACU’s 34-foot Centennial Celebration statue entitled Jacob’s Dream. From this scan, the Captured Dimensions team produced a 27-inch scaled bronze-coated replica by printing it in 8 different sections on a MakerBot Replicator 2.
The team then assembled the replica using custom 3D printed dowels, applied a bronze coating and attached it to a weighted base. The final result is an extremely precise facsimile of the original statue that can provide a lasting memento for the artist and for other lovers of the work.
Representatives from ACU’s Maker Lab and Department of Art & Design, including Jacob’s Dream sculptor Jack Maxwell, also attended the Smithsonian X 3D expo to share their work and their experience in digitizing the Jacob’s Dream statue.
Captured Dimensions was also recently called upon by the groundbreaking New York designer Francis Bitonti to scan several butterflies used to develop the world’s first 3D printed paper dress. Mr. Bitonti developed his ”butterfly dress” in partnership with MCor Technologies and expects to unveil the design in the near future.
In addition to Captured Dimensions, 3D Systems and ACU’s Maker Lab, the Smithsonian Castle also hosted other exhibitors highlighting 3D capture and 3D printing resources available to researchers and members of the public. These included, among others, the Digital Commons team at DC’s own MLK Library, and Anderson Ta of the Maryland Institute College of Art’s Digital Fabrication Studio.
For those interested in learning more about the Smithsonian’s 3D initiatives and the X 3D launch event, the institution has made a webcast available on UStream.