Participation: AMUG’s Cornerstone for Success
Welcome to the July AMUG newsletter. As mid-July moves in, I hope everyone is enjoying some well-deserved time off from your regular job routine.
I spoke in my June newsletter article about the 2013 AMUG Conference being more inclusive of education and training, which can be achieved with the help of our users, OEM’s and exhibitors. That assistance may come in many forms — participation being one of them. A call for presenters will be going out in the next month or two, so please don’t wait for a call from me or other AMUG board members; step up and offer your services now. It will be a very rewarding experience.
Please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
We are pleased by the early results of our social media programs, but we hope to see them grow significantly. If you have not already done so, please join or follow all of our social media sites to stay up to date and share your experiences.
- Twitter: @AdditiveMFGUG
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/additivemanufacturingusersgroup
- Google+: plus.google.com/108842347003344667436
- LinkedIn (group): www.linkedin.com/groups/Additive-Manufacturing-Users-Group-AMUG-4489581
Our Mission: Additive Manufacturing Users Group (AMUG) educates and advances the uses and applications of additive manufacturing technologies.
AM in My Life
I would like to relate a short, real-life experience in which AM came in quite handy.
My oldest daughter, Kaitlyn, has a rare skin disorder called Cutis Laxa (“loose skin” in Latin) in which an elastin gene is missing. This mostly affects her from the neck down. There are many different types of Cutis Laxa; luckily, Kaitlyn has a less severe type.
In late June, we attended a clinic at the University of Pittsburgh with several families also affected by this genetic disorder. One family came all the way from Mexico. During the clinic, 3D facial scans were done, and I was fortunate to have my AMUG all-in-one pen/laser pointer/flash drive with me. I was able to convince the 3D scanning technician to give me Kaitlyn’s scan data.
Once I got back to the office, I printed a full-size, full-color Z Corp model to send back to the genetics research team. This was the first 3D model that they have received from one of their patients, and Dr. Urban, who headed the clinic, was very thankful and appreciative. No one on the research team was aware of this AM technology.
I was very happy to do my part in educating Dr. Urban and his team.
Materials: AM’s Growth Factor
Materials have always been the key for additive manufacturing adoption. While we always want speed, accuracy and resolution, these factors are inconsequential if a material will not perform well in the intended application.
Looking back, the good news is that there have been significant advances in additive manufacturing materials. This has helped the industry to grow into what it is today. Looking forward, the news is even better. There is so much more that can be done and tremendous opportunity for innovation.
Consider that additive manufacturing is unrivaled in the diversity of methods and equaled only by machining in the range of materials processed. Can you think of any other manufacturing method that can process plaster, photopolymer, thermoplastic, ferrous metals, non-ferrous metals, ceramic, sand and glass? Can you name another manufacturing method that is as diverse as additive manufacturing — binding, curing, extruding, melting and laminating with ink jets, lasers, electron beams, LEDs and extruders? Can you name any other process that can combine two materials on the fly in varying ratios?
The diversity of processes, with more likely to arise, will yield even more materials and perhaps even new, never-before-seen material classes. This has, and will, fuel growth for the industry. For example:
- Objet: 107 materials, many of which are created as parts are printed (Digital Materials).
- University of Exeter: aluminum composites made by mixing a combination of inexpensive powders that form new particles in the SLM process.
- Optomec: Both LENS and Aerosol Jet dynamically mix materials during the deposition process.
I believe that phenomenal growth will occur when industry leverages the technologies to do something unique rather than mimicking what is already possible. Unique materials and variable properties will distinguish additive manufacturing from all other processes.
AM Industry Advisor
The Sorovetz Report
Hotel Reservations — Secure the Low Rate
Holy cow, the 2013 annual Conference and Exhibition is only nine months away. It seems like only yesterday that we were wrapping up the 2012 program.
As you may or may not know, the 2013 AMUG Conference and Exhibition will take place at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront in Jacksonville, Florida, April 14-18, 2013. The AMUG group rate is $115.00 per night. I am asking everyone to please make your reservations early (i.e., now) to guarantee the $115.00 (plus tax) room rate. This year several people missed the reservation deadline for the group rate cutoff and ended up paying over $200.00 per night, instead of the $115.00, which means they had to pay an additional $425.00 on average because they registered late.
The on-line reservation link is http://www.hilton.com/en/hi/groups/personalized/T/TUSHTHH-AMUG-20140404/index.jhtml?WT.mc_id=POG . If you are a government employee, use the https://resweb.passkey.com/go/AMUGGOV2013 link to save $35.00 per night, but act fast. There are only 15 rooms per night available at the government rate.
For additional hotel information, visit https://www.amug.com/venue.htm or call (904) 588-1234.
Have a great summer,
Thomas A. Sorovetz