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@3DSystemscorp Partners With @Teach_Design For UK Education Initiative

Great news announced today…. Check out the 3D Systems press release..

November 20, 2013: Leading 3D printing manufacturer 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) today announced an innovative partnership with Teach Design, a not-for-profit organisation set up to provide very low cost training to UK Design Technology teachers.

Twenty regional Teach Design Tech Centres are being established in secondary schools across the UK and will be equipped with award-winning 3D Systems Cubeand CubeX 3D printers which will be made available for use across the curriculum by both primary and secondary schools.

The move by 3D Systems ensures that teachers will be able to learn how to maximise the use of 3D printers in the classroom, not just in design technology but across all areas of the curriculum. The machines will also be made available to STEMNET ambassadors to promote 3D printing in their voluntary work with children.

3D Systems UK Education Co-ordinator Iain Major said, “This partnership with Teach Design is very exciting as training is the key to ensuring that both staff and students can get the most from this cutting edge technology. 3D printing is a wonderful medium to allow students to understand the processes of designing for production and discover their innovation potential as we live in the time of the circular economy. It is going to be very exciting to see what students come up with.”

Teach Design’s co-founder Phil Holton said “We are delighted with the generous donation of these fabulous machines. We plan to train thousands of teachers in the use of the Cube and CubeX printers to get the most from using them in class. We will also be publishing lots of project resources for teachers to use with their students.”

Learn more about 3D Systems commitment to education today.


DfE report… 3D printers in schools: uses in the curriculum

The Department for Education in England has published a report on 3D printing in schools to enrich STEM and design subjects.

Download the document here

The document looks at the experiences of 21 schools using 3D printers for the first time in Science, Maths and D&T.

A write up on the Telegraph newspaper goes on to say thet £500K will be invested to allow 60 teaching schools to buy printers and train teachers to use them effectively.


Ever wondered how a @Cubify #3DPrinter is made?

3D printers these days are precision well engineered machines… Well that can certainly be said of the 3D Systems / Cubify CubeX.

But ever wondered how they are made? Here is a brilliant report by Fabaloo that sheds a little light on the process at the factory in Clevedon UK.

Link to the report on the Fabaloo blog



FABRICATED The new world of #3D printing

Look at what dropped through my post box today!

Really excited as I was fortunate enough to contribute towards the writing of this book…. Well at least chapter 9 “A factory in the classroom”.

I haven't yet had a chance to read the book in its entirety but dipping onto it at random I must say that Hod Lipson and Melba Kurman have certainly hit the nail on the head in their practical and imaginative insight into the question… “How will 3D printing change my life”?

To quote from the back cover of the book… “What would you create if you had a machine that could make (almost) anything? Fabricated offers you practical and imaginative insight into the question, “How will 3D printing change my life?” This book is an informative and fast-paced exploration of 3D printing technologies and the people who use them. You'll take a journey to design studios, businesses, schools, and cutting-edge research labs. Based on hundreds of hours of interviews, Fabricated explores the promise and peril of a 3D printed present and future. Businesses will be liberated from the tyrannies of economies of scale Factories and global supply chains will shrink, finding themselves closer to their customers The law, already reeling from digital media, will once again need to be redefined Our environment might breathe easier in a 3D printed economy, or it could choke on a rising tide of plastic 3D printed digital and intelligent, adaptive materials will change our relationship with the physical world If you're intrigued with new technology, business strategy, popular science, or the social impact of technology, Fabricated will fascinate you”.

So, if you are an engineer, educator, designer, or in business there is something in this book for you. The chapters covered are… 1 Everything is becoming science fiction. 2 A machine that can make almost anything. 3 Nimble manufacturing: good, fast and cheap. 4 Tomorrow's economy of printable products. 5 Printing in layers. 6 Design software, the digital canvas. 7 Bioprinting in “living ink”. 8 Digital cuisine. 9 A factory in the classroom. 10 Unleashing a new aesthetic. 11 Green, clean manufacturing. 12 Ownership, safety, and new legal frontiers. 13 Designing the future. 14 The next episode of 3D printing.

The great thing about this book is that it isn't a simple “how to use a 3D printer” publication… At the current rate of progress in 3D printing that would be obsolete before it even reached the shelves, this book seeks to explore some of the deeper implications of 3D printing…. How this technology can change our lives!

The book is available in printed and ebook formats, and here is a link to it on Amazon.


3D printing at university

Some wonderful new 3D printing developments have been happening over the last few weeks that I couldn’t omit from my blog…

Early in November Ian Major from 3DS / Bits from Bytes presented a 3D Touch printer to the University of Bristol for use by their students. See the attached photos.

On the BfB forum the university also posted the following …. “The 3DTouch in the atrium of the Merchant Venturer’s Building in the University of Bristol has been available to the students for just over a week now and has been in almost continuous use. So far the student have mostly been using it to print cases for their Raspberry Pis, though there has also been a Rubics Cube and I did a Venus de Milo to decorate my desk”.

In another development the University of Warwick has just erased some information about some amazing new composite material that they are using for 3DP. The material that they are calling “Carbomorph” is conductive and is being used in some really interesting ways… Flex sensors, capacitive interfaces, and more. Check out this web page for more information http://www.3ders.org/articles/20121122-printing-electronic-sensors-using-low-… . This new material looks like it could have some real impact on 3DP projects made by students in schools if/when it becomes available.

Geelong, Clevedon and 3D printing


From time to time I get requests to explain about 3D printing in schools for different publications. Well this happened a couple of weeks ago from someone in Geelong. Having never heard of Geelong I had to do a quick bit of Internet research…. It’s near Melbourne, Australia!

So I jotted down a few of my thoughts, observations and experiences and emailed them off to the guys at Barwon Copying Solutions (BCS)… And then promptly forgot everything about it. It was a very pleasant surprise when I received an email this week with a copy of the page from the Geelong Business News magazine.

And what a brilliant article they have produced, background information and lots of in depth explanations about the use of 3D printing in schools… And some great quotes from me too! It feels “really cool” that what we are doing with 3D printing using our Bits from Bytes machines here in Clevedon School is potentially having an influence on students in Oz.

With the kind permission of the BCS I have posted a copy here. Many thanks to the “guys from Geelong” Paul and Sue.


To baldly go… (3D Printing)… Part 2


Following on from a previous post “To baldly go” Tim Rylands who visited D&T a couple of weeks ago has blogged about 3D Printing in the Design & Technology department here at Clevedon School. It makes a really interesting read, so check it out here http://www.timrylands.com/2012/06/07/3d-printing-at-clevedon-school/

Thanks Tim for the brilliant and very complimentary blog post!

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