January 3, 2018
Jeremy Straub, an alumnus of Mississippi State University, now on faculty at North Dakota State University, has created a new 3D printing device.
Described currently as an imaging-based 3D quality control system, the device was designed by Straub, an associate professor of computer science, in collaboration with Benjamin Kading and Scott Kerlin, as the Starkville Daily News reports.
The device takes “multiple pictures” of the various stages of production of a 3D printed object, “scanning for cracks or flaws to prevent parts from breaking off and posing a hazard.” It can detect “both accidental and deliberate flaws” in 3D products, with the images it takes being compared to “what is expected”, so that any faults or discrepancies can be uncovered and fixed.
“It’s not just researchers that are using 3-D printing anymore,” Straub said. “Now children, store clerks, senior citizens and lots of other people who aren’t printing experts are making objects. It’s critical that printers have built-in capabilities to ensure that those objects are safe and won’t break or injure people.”
On Tuesday the patent for the device was issued, entitled “Characterising 3D Printed Objects for 3D Printing”.
Straub described the invention as being born “out of necessity”.
“We had a number of printers, and we would try to print stuff overnight, or print stuff and leave it, and we would come back and find a mess,” Straub said. “After that happened a few times, we were like ‘OK. you know, one, we need to figure out why the printer’s doing this.’”
While it emerged that the problem “an easily correctable hardware issue”, he still wanted to find a way to prevent it.
“We wanted to make sure before we went too far down this road, that we were able to actually detect enough types of problems to make it worth doing,” Straub said.
Currently a prototype of his system has been created and Straub has been talking to several firms about “potentially licensing the technology.”
Categories : Products and Technology