Tag Archives: Windform

Kentucky Students Successfully Launch 3D Printed Satellite into Orbit

Student-Created Satellite Features Windform Technology

CRP USA announced the successful launch of Windform as part of the collaborative KySat-2 project, a 1U CubeSat, by students at the University of Kentucky and Morehead State University.

The collaborative team of students from the University of Kentucky and Morehead State University, along with Kentucky Space, launched the KySat-2 into orbit as part of the NASA ElaNa IV mission out of Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

35 minutes after deployment from the launch vehicle, KySat-2 began beaconing its telemetry data and was almost immediately heard by amateur radio operators.  Since then, the KySat-2 team began performing system checks for each of the various subsystems that make up the satellite.  According to the KySat-2 team, all systems have been performing nominally.

“Congratulations to the KySat-2 team on a very successful launch.  We are excited for the KySat-2 team, and are looking forward to following their mission,” said Stewart Davis, Director of Operations CRP USA.   “As part of our overall work to expand the use of Windform beyond motorsports, this launch is another successful project that continues to add to our growing space flight heritage.”

KySat-2 3D Printed Satellite CRP Students

“There were several 3d printed components on the KySat-2 made by CRP USA from CRP Technology’s proprietary material Windform XT 2.0,” explains Twyman Clements, KySat-2 Project Manager, Kentucky Space.  “One of the subsystems, is the camera systems that acts as an attitude determination system called Stellar Gyro.  The 3d printed parts, were produced using the additive manufacturing technology Selective Laser Sintering and Windform XT 2.0 material.  The additive manufactured process 3d printed the mounting hardware for the camera system, extensions for the separation switches, clips for holding the antennas in their stowed position, and the mounting bracket for the on board batteries.  The process and the material were critical to achieve the right components for KySat-2.”

Related story: First Performance Italian Electric Motorcycle Designed and 3D Printed

KySat-2’s main mission is to be an educational tool and demonstration for the students working on the satellite.  KySat-2 was designed, built, and tested entirely by students and engineers, with most of the subsystems designed in-house.

This video below offers a glimpse at the development, payload and launch of KySat-2.

3D Printing and Materials for Space Applications

CRP USA together with CRP Technology produced five Windform XT 2.0 parts that are incorporated into the deployable solar panels on the KySat-2; camera annulus, lens cover, deployable extensions, antenna clips, and battery holders.

One of the highest levels of Windform materials, Windform XT 2.0 is a high performance material filled with carbon fiber and offers maximum mechanical performance for 3D printed parts.  The material combines maximum toughness and robustness, yet produces an extremely light, final part that doesn’t impact the overall production weight of the KySat-2 unit. Utilizing the additive manufactured technology, Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), and Windform XT 2.0 material final parts for small productions can easily replace parts that are usually produced with traditional technology, or are otherwise unmanufacturable.

This makes Windform a material that can stretch the limits of SLS applications, even in space applications.

Related Story: Do The Mutation: 3D Printed Masks Take Art to a New Level of Personal

Project Update

KySat-2 was launched on board a Minotaur I rocket built by Orbital Sciences.  Typically, operational lifetime for a CubeSat is around 1 year due to radiation exposure and damage to the batteries.  The KySat-2 will remain operational as long as the team is able to make reliable contact to the satellite.  Testing has already begun on the subsystems and the team is hopeful they will be able to take pictures and download them from the spacecraft in the next few weeks.

Follow the progress at @KySpace


First Performance Italian Electric Motorcycle Designed and 3D Printed

Electric Superbike Energica Ego is built using 3D Printing and Windform materials

Modena is the homeland of the Italian Motor Valley and the birthplace of il Commendatore Enzo Ferrari. So it is fitting that an Italian electric motorcycle has been developed in this Italian town. Using F1 technologies and 3D printing, CRP Group has built the first electric superbike called the Energica Ego.

Selective laser sintering technology and polyamide-based materials reinforced with carbon fibers, called Windform, have been used in the construction of the electric superbike  “proudly-made-in-Modena”.

Energica Ego 3D Printed Motorcycle

The laser selectively fuses powdered material by scanning cross-sections, generated from a 3D digital file’s description of the part, on to the surface of a powder bed. After each cross-section is scanned, the powder bed is lowered by one indexed layer thickness, then a new layer of material is applied on top, and the process is repeated until the part is completed. Thanks to this technology it is possible to create fairings, headlight covers and motorcycle components apart from the mechanical and electrical parts.

Watch the video below to see the bike in action.

“3D printing and Windform materials can lead to the production of prototypes and functional parts, that once made, can be metallized and painted,” said CRP Group. “With free-form design, short fabrication time and the ability to build extremely complex geometry that cannot be easily tooled (or impossible to tool) a customized production is realized that goes beyond the aesthetic model.”

Windform materials allow for the creation of highly-functional and beautifully finished parts suitable for multiple applications. Then 3D printing is used for production manufacturing.

Windform Materials 3D Printing

Excerpt from related story: Incredible Art with 3D Printed Windform Materials

Design lab Do The Mutation developed software called Collagene to create exquisite masks. Faces were scanned using a Kinect sensor, and then software generated customized masks for each person. Each mask was produced as a unique piece through 3D printing and Windform materials.

Energica Ego represents an application of 3D printing that puts together aesthetics, Italian design and high performances in a 100% electric vehicle.

Energica Ego is the first Italian electric motorcycle that competes on performance with traditional endothermal motorcycles that can reach 240km/h and can ride up to 150 km. The batteries charge in less than three hours with AC and a half an hour with DC.  Energica Ego is also equipped with a KERS braking system that allows it to recover useful energy for use by the motorcycle like F1 cars. Several patents have been registered for this project which is unique in its class.

Energica Ego 3D Printed Motorcycle Showcase

Energica Ego will be available for purchase in 2015 with ABS and it will be manufactured with traditional productive technologies. The 3D printed parts made of Windform, such as the fairing will be built with the suitable technologies of mass production.  All metal parts such as the engine frame, the forks and the battery pack will be built with casted aluminum.

Learn more at www.energicasuperbike.com


Do The Mutation: 3D Printed Masks Take Art to a New Level of Personal

Collagene Do The Mutation 3D Printed Masks

Incredible Art with 3D Printed Masks

Italian designers exploring generative design have taken 3D printed art to a new level of personal. Design lab Do The Mutation developed software called Collagene to create the exquisite masks you can see in the gallery below. These masks were displayed at Milan Design Week inside the venue [Re]vive in April 2013.

Faces were scanned using a Kinect sensor, and then software generated customized masks for each person. Each mask was produced as a unique piece through 3D printing and Windform materials. The three masks were produced by CRP with their reinforced polyamide-based materials.

The designers provided this perspective on their work:

The creation of a set of masks offers the opportunity of deepening the sensibility throught a research on the relationship between body and dress, imagining the mask as the product of the growth of a virtual organism on the human face. The object keeps its traditional functions of body prosthesis, providing identity alteration and concealment, stimulating viewers’ imagination and visual association.

This project explores the border territory between physical and virtual, connecting computer code’s abstractions with the intimate, visceral dimension of body alteration’s sense brought by the mask theme. The topographic anatomy of the face acts as input for a set of algorithms that under designer’s control generate the fibers that form the object, creating a material formation that after 3d printing perfectly fits its territory, people’s faces.

The set of objects made in Windform LX 2.0, a polyamide-based material reinforced with fibre glass represent a population of differentiated individuals, phenotypes sharing the same genotype. No matter how many masks might be produced, they all will share the same genetic code. The system is then flexible in offering possibilities of formal and diagramatic variation, in creating even highly different objects, customizable on different faces and as expression of different designers.

Watch the video below to see how the masks were made and the amazing use of generative algorithms paired with 3D printing to create truly unique art.