10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Infrastructure // PC & Servers
News
8/2/2013
12:51 PM
Jeff Bertolucci
Jeff Bertolucci
Slideshows
Connect Directly
Google+
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do

Cars, guitars, and tracheal implants: Is there anything that 3-D printers can't make?
Previous
6 of 11
Next


The prognosis was bleak for Kaiba Gionfriddo, an infant suffering from tracheobronchomalacia, a condition that can cause weak airway walls to collapse during breathing or coughing. Kaiba's doctors sought help from University of Michigan scientists, who used 3-D printing techniques to design and implant a custom-made tracheal splint for Kaiba.

The researchers created the splint from a CT scan of Kaiba's trachea/bronchus. They used a 3-D biomaterial printing process to construct the device, which was made from a biopolymer called polycaprolactone. In February 2012, doctors sewed the splint around Kaiba's airway to expand his bronchus and provide a skeleton for growth. Over a period of three years, the boy's body will absorb the splint. The University of Michigan says this image-based design and 3-D printing method can be used to build and reconstruct various tissue and bone structures.

RECOMMENDED READING:

NASA Tests 3-D Printing In Space

Future Scientists Showcase Inventions At White House

Nokia Embraces 3-D Printing Future, Perhaps Too Soon

NASA's IT Future: Robot Telework, 3-D Printing

5 Emerging Enterprise Technologies

Geekteach: 3-D Printing In The Classroom

Windows 8.1: 10 Surprise Benefits

20 People Who Changed Tech: Shockley, Bardeen & Brattain

Cisco Futurists Plan For Internet Of Everything

10 Medical Robots That Could Change Healthcare

Previous
6 of 11
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
KMBurnham
50%
50%
KMBurnham,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/13/2013 | 4:54:45 PM
re: 10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do
^^+1. The applications are endless :-)
Thomas Claburn
50%
50%
Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
8/6/2013 | 7:03:14 PM
re: 10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do
3D printers are great for prototypes, but I think their utility to the general public is overstated. Until they can print food, it will always be more affordable and easier to one-click purchase plastic baubles from Amazon.com. In any event, many useful items have moving parts and/or were made with multiple materials, making them ill-suited for 3D printing. Single-substance items, like dinner plates, deserve a substance better than plastic (and even plates work better with glaze on the ceramic...so a multi-step manufacturing process). I'm sure however they'll find a home in places like the International Space Station for parts replication.
Becca L
50%
50%
Becca L,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/6/2013 | 6:34:48 PM
re: 10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do
I love this technology, and it's amazing how it's just catching on with the public. Many people are still learning what it can do, and why it may be useful. Meanwhile its use within the medical and dental fields, to say the least, have been mindblowing (look it up). It doesn't hurt that I can print shoes too. A 3D printer is rapidly making its way to the top of my Christmas wish-list.
NnoduaN197
50%
50%
NnoduaN197,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/6/2013 | 3:07:00 PM
re: 10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do
How can I get a 3D portable handy scanner
tcubed
50%
50%
tcubed,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/5/2013 | 5:37:13 PM
re: 10 Cool Things 3-D Printers Can Do
How about having the 3D printer make another 3D printer; and so on, and so on; eventually they will be plentiful and cheap enough for me to be able to afford one :-)
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Annual IT Salary Report 
Base pay for IT professionals has remained flat this year with a median annual salary of $88,000 for staff and $112,000 for management. However, 58% of staff and 62% of managers who responded to our survey say they're satisfied with their compensation. Download this report to find out which positions earn the highest compensation.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of November 6, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll