3D printing has taken on some awesome forms of approaches to aiding engineers and creative to apply innovative techniques. One such of note is software that helps to simulate surface materials and in this case, cars.
Using proprietary software, this technique utilizes a scanning technology that covers the surface of a car and then allows that data to be modified. This allows the engineers to best speculate on which surface details they need to change for greater efficiency and aesthetics. To be able to test and view new surfaces means savings of incredible amounts of money and man hours. Specialists can crunch the numbers so to speak and bring about a far more efficient approach to manufacturing and production. 3D printing by 3D Systems is the leading industry for this and for good reason.
Called Class A Resurfacing and the company Millit5 has broken through with innovative scanning that has ears open and eyes bugging. Using 3D Systems’ software and 3D printing tech they’ve made a name for themselves with resurfacing and creating models that give far more efficiency and engineering applications that had never been seen before. Interior and exterior scanning of the cars allows for a 40% scale model for use in wind tunnel and acoustic testing. Using Geomagic DesignX, a trademarked process they are also able to make a fine marriage of hybrid use of both scanning and creating solid models.
In addition the use of ICEM for better fine tuning of Class A Surfacing brings engineers even closer to detailing and tweaking of surface areas of the motor vehicle. Minute changes by engineers can be clearly seen and worked on in real time. This digital wizardry is bringing about a revolution in the way autos are designed and engineered. This approach can catch those pesky dents and dings that might have been missed. Matching industry standards of G2 and G3 surface quality they can bring about a tolerance of .5 millimeters deviation from scan to surface in downstream CFD flow analysis.
What all this means is that thanks to 3D Systems and the other software available new approaches and finishing of high end models of just about any object can be achieved. It takes fine artists and engineers to master the technologies but excellent craftsmanship calls for this. The ability now to scan with such precision and then use 3D printing to produce such models of exceptional accuracy makes the future of 3D printing even more alluring.
From high end cars to household objects, toys, tools, and more, 3D printing using this kind of software and combination of such means the sky’s the limit for engineers and artists in this new age of the 21st Century.
The implications for the future are breathless. As companies like 3D Systems and their partners improve on the technologies available we may well see far more accessible and affordable devices for the home and business that will be like something out of a science fiction movie. Scanning favorite objects, tweaking them in the software and then 3D printing them at one’s leisure is something one doesn’t see except for in a Star Trek episode.
3D printing is taking hold as a major new industry and people at home and the office are grasping for every new instrument and breakthrough. Soon we’ll see these technologies all over and making life much more productive.
Image credit: 3D Systems