3D Bioprinting using Nano.

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Magnetic 3D bioprinting uses magnetic nanoparticles to 3D print cell structures. The magnetic nanoparticles are biocompatible they can be in contact with living cells without causing adverse effects. The process makes cells magnetic by tagging them with magnetic particles. Once the cells become magnetic, external magnetic forces are used to 3D printed the cells into specific cell structures.  A technique called magnetic levitation is used to levitate cells in a container using a magnet above the container. Levitation of the cells causes the cells to aggregate rapidly.

The first 3D bioprinting system was commercially made available by Nano3D Biosciences. This technology is targeted for use in the pharmaceutical industry.  This technology can be used for building simple cellular structures such as spheroids and rings as well as complex structures such as aortic valves.


Magnetic 3D bioprinting.



3D Printed wearable skin.

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According to Neri Oxman, “This is the first time that 3D printing technology has been used to produce a photosynthetic wearable piece with hollow internal channels designed to house microorganisms. Inspired by the human gastrointestinal tract, Mushtari hosts synthetic microorganisms, a co-culture of photosynthetic cyanobacteria and E. coli bacteria that can fluoresce bright colors in darkness and produce sugar or biofuels when exposed to the sun. Such functions will in the near future augment the wearer by scanning our skins, repairing damaged tissue and sustaining our bodies, an experiment that has never been attempted before.”





3D printing materials – glass.

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Printing transparent glass in 3-D

According to the 3D printing material,” using glass is difficult because of the high temperatures required to melt the material used for 3D printing. Technologies for 3D printing using glass exist so far mainly in research labs and Universities. Some of these efforts are described below.
In 2009, researchers at Solheim Rapid Manufacturing Laboratory of the University of Washington developed a process called Vitraglyphic. In this process, powdered glass is mixed with an adhesive material and loaded into a 3D printer. A binder is deposited into the powdered mixture and used for 3D printing shapes. These shapes were put in a kiln so that the layers of glass fuse and create a solid glass object. The team used a similar procedure to 3D print ceramics objects.
In another effort, researchers led by Professor Neri Oxman of MIT’s Mediated Matter Group developed a 3D printer that extrudes molten glass. The 3D printer maintains a nozzle through which the glass is extruded at temperatures of about 1,900 degrees Fahrenheit. This is significantly higher than the temperatures used for other 3D printing, for example, plastic.
An Israel-based company Micron3DP has also announced that they have developed an extruder that can 3D print using molten glass at temperatures as high as 1640 degrees Celsius.¨

Glass casting meets the digital age: 3-D glass printing method developed.

Vitraglyphic – 3D Printing in Glass.

3D printing using molten glass.

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According to the Israel-based company Micron3DP, ” they have announced that they have developed technology for 3D printing objects using molten glass. Micron3DP specializes in high-end extruders, hot ends, and accessories for 3d printing. They have developed an extruder for extruding extremely hot molten glass. The extruder can 3D print objects using soft glass or soda-lime glass at a temperature of 850 degrees Celsius. The extruder can even extrude hard glass or borosilicate glass at a temperature of 1640 degrees Celsius. Micron3DP is looking for investors to invest in their glass 3D printing technology.¨

Micron3DP’s Glass Printer.


Solar-powered 3D printer for making glass objects from the sand.

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According to the SLS (selective laser sintering) designer and researcher Markus Kayser,” The machine and the results of these first experiments presented here represent the initial significant steps towards what I envisage as a new solar-powered production tool of great potential. This is one of the processes used by 3D printers. The SLS process uses powdered raw materials such as plastic, glass, metal, ceramic. A laser is directed at the powdered material to selectively fuse the material. Layers of the fused material are created to form a 3D object.¨

Markus Kayser, a designer, and researcher born in Germany used the idea behind the SLS technology to develop solar sinter, a 3D printer that uses sand as the powdered raw material and solar energy to produce glass objects. Both solar energy and sand are available in abundance for free. So once a solar sinter is made, an unlimited supply of 3D objects can be created for free.

The first solar sinter was manually operated and tested in the Moroccan desert in 2011. A larger and fully-automated computer-driven solar sinter was subsequently developed and tested in Egypt, near the Sahara desert in 2012. This is brilliant and thought to provoke an experiment.

Solar Sinter Project.

3D printing functional optical components.

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According to LUXeXcel the conventional 3D printing techniques,” we are not able to 3D print functional optics. These 3D printers may be able to 3D print transparent materials but fail to achieve optical properties such as surface roughness and scattering. LUXeXcel, a company based in The Netherlands has developed print optical technology that can 3D print fully transparent, smooth, and optically functional optical components such as lenses.
LUXeXcel uses a photopolymer material for 3D printing. LUXeXcel created the world’s first 3D printed reading glasses including the frames and the lenses for the Dutch Monarchs. However, their services are not limited to royalty but available to the general public as well. LUXeXcel’s website allows users to upload designs and order 3D printed optics. The design can be uploaded in a variety of file formats and has to conform to their design guidelines.  They promise to 3D print a design within 5 working days of placing the order. The print optical technology has used in automotive, medical, lighting, aerospace, and other industries.¨


3D Printing materials, metal mixed with ABS or PLA.

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According to Some vendors,” they provide filaments based on metal. These filaments mix metal with ABS, thereby allowing desktop 3D printers to be able to use them. Most of these filaments can be printed at a temperature similar to PLA or ABS used in the filament. Examples of these filaments are as follows.

Bronzefill Filament: A bronze fill filament is made of eighty percent bronze and twenty percent PLA. Having a mix of metal and PLA allows the filament to work with desktop 3D printers. A bronze fill 3D printed object can be polished to make it shine. A similar filament is copper fill filament that is made of copper particles mixed with PLA.


ColorFabb bronzeFill Metal Filament – 2.85mm (0.75kg).

Proto-Pasta’s Stainless Steel Filament: A filament called Proto-Pasta’s Stainless Steel combines PLA with finely ground stainless steel particles. The 3D printed object has steel-like properties including weight, density, and texture. The proto-pasta filament is not stronger than PLA because the steel is in powdered form. Nor is the Proto-pasta filament conductive because the steel particles are separated by PLA.

Proto-Pasta Stainless Steel PLA – 2.85mm (0.5kg).

Stainless Steel PLA.

Proto-Pasta’s Magnetic Iron Filament: Proto-Pasta’s magnetic iron filament is made of PLA and iron powder. It acts like iron and is attracted to magnets.  It even rusts like iron. However, since the iron particles are separated by PLA, the magnetic iron filament is not conductive.

Magnetic Iron PLA.

Tungsten Metal ABS Filament: Another metal filament called GMASS Tungsten Metal ABS Filament includes ABS and Tungsten. Adding tungsten to ABS gives the filament a metal feel and also makes it heavier like metal. Also, the material has radiation shielding properties.

GMASS Tungsten Metal ABS Filament – 1.75mm (0.5kg).

Bismuth Metal ABS filament: Another metal filament is GMASS Bismuth Metal ABS filament made of ABS and bismuth. This filament is also radiation shielding (but contains no lead) and can be used for creating parts for use in medical environments.

GMASS High-Density Bismuth Filled ABS 1.75mm (2.7g/cc).

GMASS Bismuth Metal ABS Natural Color Filament – 1.75mm (1kg).



3D printing material, ABS.

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ABS is a petroleum-based plastic. ABS is non-biodegradable. ABS is a strong and durable material.  Therefore it is used in various products including protective headgear, golf club heads, carrying cases, enclosures for electronic assemblies, kitchen appliances, and toys including Lego bricks.  ABS is soluble in acetone, i.e., nail polish remover.
ABS is extruded at temperatures of 210-250°C. Heating up ABS causes fumes to be released. These fumes are usually tolerable but may cause irritation in people with chemical sensitivities. These fumes include chemicals that are known to be carcinogenic. Therefore, 3D printing using ABS should be performed with caution and in places with adequate ventilation.


3D Printer Materials Guide – 3D Beginners.

3D printing material, PLA.

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Poly Lactic Acid or PLA is made from organic material, for example, cornstarch, tapioca, or sugarcane. PLA is used in the production of bags, food packaging, disposable utensils, plastic bags, and so on. PLA is used as surgical implants such as anchors, rods, pins, or plates. If inserted in the body, PLA breaks into harmless lactic acid within 6 months to a couple of years. The slow degradation helps the body to slowly take over the role of the implanted structure as it recovers.
Since PLA is made from renewable resources, it is one of the most environmentally friendly materials used for 3D printing. PLA is extruded at a temperature of 160°C to 220°C. Since PLA has a low melting temperature, parts made from PLA can warp under heated conditions. When heated for 3D printing, PLA emits a sweet smell similar to corn. These are not harmful fumes and therefore PLA can be used for 3D printing indoors. PLA comes in most colors including translucent and glows in the dark. PLA cools slowly and therefore some 3D printers install a fan to cool down the 3D printed material. When PLA cools down it is tough but rather brittle. PLA has become a popular choice of material for 3D printing due to its environmental friendliness and low toxicity.

Polylactic acid.

3D printing living tissue.

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Youtube Video: 3D Bioprinter

According to Organovo,” this is a medical research company headquartered in San Diego which designs and develops three-dimensional human tissue. The living 3D printed tissue can be used for testing drugs before giving the drugs to a real person. Organovo uses a proprietary bioprinting platform called NovoGen for 3D printing tissue.
Pharmaceutical companies conventionally perform testing on animals or on cells in Petri-dishes. Both methods of testing are very different from testing on a living person. Therefore several clinical trials fail when tried on the living person even if they were considered successful on animals or cells in petri-dish. Organovo technology bridges this gap by providing 3D tissue models that are much closer to a living person. Pharmaceutical companies can use the 3D tissues developed using this technology for testing.
In 2014 Organovo announced the commercial release of exVive3DTM Human Liver Tissue for preclinical drug discovery testing. In April 2015, Organovo presented results of 3D printing in vitro 3D kidney tissue at the 2015 Experimental Biology conference in Boston. In 2015 L’Oreal signed an agreement with Organovo to produce 3D-printed skin for use in testing cosmetics. The long-term goal of Organovo’s 3D bioprinting technology is to be able to create organs for transplantation.¨