UMaine Advanced Structures and Composites Center received three Guinness World Records on October 10 for the world’s largest prototype polymer 3D printer, largest solid 3D-printed object, and largest 3D-printed boat.
The world’s largest 25-foot, 5,000-pound 3D-printed boat, named 3Dirigo was tested in the Alfond W2 Ocean Engineering Laboratory, an offshore model testing facility equipped with a high-performance wind machine over a multidirectional wave basin.
“I was delighted to join UMaine’s celebration unveiling the world’s largest 3D printer and largest 3D-printed object,” (…), “The future of the [UMaine] Composites Center is bright, thanks to the excellent working relationship between UMaine, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and many other federal agencies, which will support next-generation, large-scale additive manufacturing with biobased thermoplastics. As a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I helped secure $20 million for this exciting collaboration, and an additional $20 million is included in the committee-approved energy funding bill.”
– Sen. Susan Collins
“Maine is the most forested state in the nation, and now we have a 3D printer big enough to make use of this bountiful resource,”, (…), “Today marks the latest innovative investment in Maine’s forest economy, which will serve to increase sustainability, advance the future of biobased manufacturing and diversify our forest products industry. This is a huge opportunity for the state of Maine, and I’m grateful to everyone — especially the University of Maine and the FOR/Maine initiative — for their work to make this day a reality.”
– Sen. Angus King
The largest 3D printer is designed to print objects as long as 100 feet by 22 feet wide by 10 feet high, and can print at 500 pounds per hour. The one-of-a-kind printer will support several ambitious initiatives, including development of biobased feedstocks using cellulose derived from wood resources, and rapid prototyping of civilian, defense and infrastructure applications. A $20 million research collaboration with ORNL and the U.S. Department of Energy will support fundamental research in key technical areas in large-scale, biobased 3D Printing. The partnership between UMaine and ORNL will advance efforts to produce new biobased materials conducive to 3D printing of large, structurally demanding systems. The research will focus on cellulose nanofiber (CNF) production, drying, functionalization and compounding with thermoplastics, building on UMaine’s leadership in CNF technology and extrusion research. By placing CNF from wood into thermoplastics, bioderived recyclable material systems can be developed with properties that may rival traditional materials, even metals.
“This is an exciting achievement in our partnership with the University of Maine,” (…), “This new equipment will accelerate application and integration of our fundamental materials science, plant genomics and manufacturing research to the development of new sustainable bioderived composites, creating economic opportunity for Maine’s forest products industry and the nation.”
-Moe Khaleel, associate laboratory Direcor for Energy and Environmental Sciences at ORNL.
Biobased feedstocks are recyclable and economical, providing competitive advantages for Maine’s manufacturing industries, including boatbuilding. The UMaine Composites Center received $500,000 from the Maine Technology Institute (MTI) to form a technology cluster to help Maine boatbuilders explore how large-scale additive manufacturing using economical, wood-filled plastics can provide the industry with a competitive advantage.
To demonstrate the new printer’s capabilities, UMaine 3D printed a 25-foot patrol boat with a hull form developed by Navatek, a leader in ship design and a UMaine Composites Center industrial partner. The 5,000-pound boat was printed in 72 hours — from Thursday, Sept. 19 to Sunday, Sept. 22. The massive printer, with both additive and precise subtractive manufacturing capabilities, enables rapid prototyping for both defense and civilian applications.
UMaine also showcased a 3D-printed, 12-foot-long U.S. Army communications shelter. The new printer will support programs with the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC) Soldier Center and its mission to develop rapidly deployable shelter systems for soldiers. Other use areas include concealment applications, structural shelters and high-temperature fire retardant materials for vehicle-mounted shelters.
“The innovation that we have witnessed here at the University of Maine will revolutionize how the Army prototypes and manufactures shelters, vehicles and other large systems,”, (…), “The lighter yet stronger 3D printed systems will advance the state of the art in additive manufacturing, forging the future of expeditionary equipment IAW with the Army’s new policy on advanced manufacturing.”
-Col. Frank Moore, military deputy for the CCDC Soldier Center.
Working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the 3D printer will further advance UMaine’s groundbreaking innovations in rapidly deployable, low-logistics infrastructure systems. That includes a 5,000-pound, 21-foot-long 3D-printed mold for a new 76-foot-long composites bridge girder. The girder has been licensed to a UMaine spinoff company, Advanced Infrastructure Technology, that is in the process of fabricating girders for a bridge to be constructed in Hampden, Maine in summer 2020. In addition, the rapid production of stay-in-place concrete formwork is a potential solution for both infrastructure and coastal resiliency construction applications.
Bartley Durst, director of the Geotechnical and Structural Laboratory at ERDC said “this capability to produce large, biobased prototypes through advanced high throughput additive manufacturing capabilities will provide critical technology development of solutions in force projection and force protection for our nation’s war fighters.”
Attending to the ceremony were U.S. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King, U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, officials from the Maine Governor’s Office, and leaders at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Soldier Center, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Manufacturing Office, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Maine and University of Maine System.
Collins and King joined leaders from the U.S. Department of Energy in 2019, UMaine, and Oak Ridge National Lab in Washington, D.C., to announce the launch of the $20 million large-scale biobased 3D Printing program that will use the 3D printer.
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Megan Collins/UMaine Composites Center UMaine Composites Center receives three Guinness World Records related to largest 3D printer https://www.powerboat-world.com/news/223059/Worlds-largest-3D-printed-boat published on Oct13 2019, 11:23 UTC, published and re-edited by João Andrade on Oct14 2019;
UMaine Composites Center Time-lapse of the World’s Largest 3D Printed Boat https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34F71XqvOjg&feature=youtu.be published on Oct10 2019, published and re-edited by João Andrade on Oct14 2019;