Repro-light Consortium aims to Revolutionize the Lighting Industry by 2020
As part of the Horizon 2020 programme, an European project for re-usable and re-configurable parts for sustainable LED based systems was initiated by lighting industry leaders. Named ‘Repro-light’, it aspires to successfully initiate a transformation in the European lighting industry, with the ultimate aim of creating the ‘Luminaire of the Future’. We thought it would be good to write a brief update on it, as it will significantly affect our future and inspire our readers!
Innovative Technologies and Materials
The Repro-light project harnesses innovative technologies and materials and aim to implement modular luminaire architecture as never attempted before. Called the ‘Luminaire of the Future’, it will include a smart production scheme and the development of a reconfigurable easily customizable LED luminaire.
Market Focus: From Energy into Function
The Repro-light project is perfectly timed to capitalize and lead this transformation. It is set to change the reputation of the LED luminaire from a disposable object, into a customizable and sustainable product, with a high function value. The LED market is currently mid-transformation, shifting its focus from energy efficiency to function values, therefore the timing of the project is perfect!
Consortium of EU Lighting Experts
Led by representatives and driving forces from the European lighting industry, as well as manufacturers, experts on lighting sustainability and the Social Sciences, the Repro-light consortium possesses the excellence and the influence to not only execute this project successfully, but also invoke a sustainable change in the European lighting industry beyond the lifetime of the project.
OEMs – Innovation leaders – Universities
The need for projects like Repro-light has been highlighted over the last years by leading lighting experts and institutions. Now, some of these thought-leaders join forces in the Repro-consortium. It includes several leading European manufacturers such as TRILUX, BJB, Ground Zero, and Rohner Engineering.
In addition, it contains remarkable innovative members of the lighting industry as Bartenbach and Luger Research, as well as experts on lighting sustainability and Life Cycle Assessment IREC and Mondragon University who are prominent in Social Sciences.
Market Needs and Requirements
The project’s first phase is underway. This initial phase of work will focus on analysing the customer needs and technical requirements. This information is vital for the following project stages, the initial phases finishing by March 2018.
Project Updates: Stay Tuned!
To receive updates on the project progress, to receive additional information about Repro-light or to learn about its partners, please visit the website.
We at 3DPrinting.Lighting strongly believe there is no future for the lighting industry without incorporating 3D printing in product design, development and operations, so we’ll be following the project updates with great interest and inform you once interesting developments come to pass. Stay tuned!
3D printing has changed how products are prototyped. With Gantri, it’s changing how products are made. The unique Gantri 3D printing process combines the simplicity and flexibility of desktop 3D printing with the quality and craftsmanship of industrial manufacturing. It allows designers worldwide to easily bring quality products to market at a fraction of the time and cost.
Gantri: Simplicity and Efficiency in Design and Fabrication
Gantri aims to break down the barriers in traditional ways of manufacturing and selling. Simplicity and efficiency are key in their designer approach. By promoting inspired design rather than a specific aesthetic, design becomes relevant to everydays life.
“Gantri helps independant designers to create inspired, high-quality lighting products and make them accessible and attainable for all”
Innovative Materials and Processess
Working with the best material innovators from around the world, we offer corn-based materials that are environmentally friendly, purposeful and durable. The in-depth knowledge of 3D printing allows designers to create optimized 3D models and achieve higher quality prints straight off the printers.
Every part is hand-finished and foreseen with a protective coating to achieve a perfect finish that feels comparable to traditional luxury products.
Bring your Concepts to Life
Gantri welcomes talented designers regardless of location or academic degree. Any independent designer around the globe can become a member of the Gantri Community to create his own products and brand.
Please refer to the Gantri shop to source your own table lights, created by independent designers worldwide. All products are made in California.
Korean Architect Creates stunning 3D Printed Trees for Temporary Art Installation
With a background in architecture, Korean designer Se Yoon Park recently created a stunning piece of art including 3D printed trees. Contrasting influences his former rural life, made him develop an interest in issues such as light, darkness, time, and life. Experimenting with gradient light and its consequent shadows, Se Yoon arrived at this particular form for his 3D printed trees, where the play of light produces ever-changing effects.
Light, Darkness and the Tree
The project ‘Light, Darkness and the Tree’ is the result of the contemplation of the words that Park takes most seriously: light, darkness, time, and life. His work explores the transitions between light and darkness, and in his sculptures, he seeks to contain both light and darkness within an exterior, a single object. His creature consists of many smaller geometric elements and imitates the organic structure of a tree.
From ‘Concept’ to ‘Design’ to ‘Reality’
The initial design stage knew multiple media, from hand-written sketches, to handmade models, to digital 3D models in Rhino. All the parts were designed in Rhino for production on a 3D printer. The biggest challenge has been error control in retaining an accuracy in shape that was essential for the structural integrity of the overall artwork.
Advantages of 3D Printing Technology
Compared to traditional methods where material is casted away, the additive 3D printing process allows being more accurate, and it is free from shrinking issues. Moreover, it provides to work with multiple design materials and bring them together in one build.
Also, a the combination of traditional fabrication methods and 3D printing technologies might be a way forward. 3D printing is a very helpful way to rapidly turn ideas into reality, while the more mature conventional technologies can turn them into real production items.
Light and Darkness in a Sculpture
Se Yoon chose Polyamide material for his creature due to its strength, lightness, and porosity, which allowed him to structurally employ the 3D printed parts in his sculptures. It also gave him the flexibility of dyeing the pieces to explore a variety of artistic surface treatments. The translucency of Polyamide also allowed him to play with an electrical light inside his sculptures, creating the effect of a soft glow.
3D Printed Trees – The Making Of: Polyamide Materials and SLS 3D Printing
Polyamide is 3D print material that is used in combination with a process named Selective Laser Sintering (SLS). Laser Sintering 3D printers do not use a filament, as many DIY printers do. On the contrary, a very fine, granular nylon powder is heated and sintered by a laser beam within the 3D printer to create the parts.
Award Winning Centerpiece Electric Light Shoe by Janne Kyttanen merges Japanese Culture Icons
The Electric Light Shoe is a 70 centimeters tall sculpture containing a dream-like universe. The artwork features a kaleidoscope of Japanese cultural icons and was designed and fabricated back in 2008 already by designer and artist Janne Kyttanen. The illuminated shoe was created as the centrepiece of the award winning Onitsuka Tiger global Electric Tiger Land campaign.
Electric Light Shoe: A Living Glowing Sculpture
The super detailed structure is laced with an LED lighting system that glows and pulses, bringing the sculpture to life. There are only one eight sculptures available in this super limited edition collection, plus two artist proofs.
The Onitsuka Tiger – Symbol for Streets and Highways
The characteristic Onitsuka Tiger stripes represents a system of highways and streets. Illuminated signs crowd the front of the shoe and a monster-like figure looms over buildings at the shoe’s opening.
Janne Kyttanen is a pioneering digital sculptor creating multidisciplinary work at the intersection of 3D printing, virtual reality and augmented reality. His work has been featured in TIME Magazine’s ‘Design 100’, the people and ideas behind the world’s most influential design. Kyttanen is best known for his revolutionary work with 3D printing and is considered to be one of the most influential designers of his generation.
Pollen Art by ZHDK : Light to Raise Awareness about Hay Fever
In Switzerland 20% of the population suffers from hay fever between January and August. Hay fever is caused by pollen like grass, ash, birch, sunflower, ragweed, and dandelions.
A density of many thousands pollen per cubic meter can be measured on some days. During these peak periods, not only allergy sufferers are affected but also people usually not allergic to pollen.
During pollen season, allergy sufferers usually try to avoid the outdoors and getting close to trees and flowering plants. The truth is, pollen is carried even inside our homes. They get inside while airing the room or are simply carried inside on one’s clothes or hair.
ZHDK: Raising Awareness for Pollen Issues
The ZHDK design project aims on raising awareness on these issues by making pollen visible for the first time: the pollen lamps.
The lamps are composed of three main parts: The lamp shade, the lamp cord and the cover lid. The lamp shade and the cover lid are 3D printed with white nylon powder. It gives the lamp a course, sandlike texture. LED Bulbs are used to give the lamps different colours.
Desktop Metal introduces two metal 3D Printing Systems covering the full PLC from Prototyping to Mass Production
Metal 3D printers have been around for decades, however they have always been limited in terms of materials, fabrication speed and user-friendliness. Desktop Metal, a mere two-year-old startup, unveiled recently two new 3D metal printing machines, one of which can create prototypes and the other production parts faster and cheaper than existing technologies.
Microwave Enhanced Sintering
The novel metal printing technology is called “microwave enhanced sintering” by Desktop Metal. The printers put down layers of metal and ceramic powders, mixed in a soft polymer. The cartridges and alloys that work with the printers are made by Desktop Metal and other major providers in additive manufacturing.
Once the parts are printed, they go into a furnace where they are rapidly ‘cooked’: The heat simply burns away the polymer.
The metal is fused together but at a temperature that won’t make it melt and lose its shape. Wherever ceramic was laid down in a printed design, metal remains separated and doesn’t fuse. The created pieces can finally be separated by hand.
DM Studio System: Office-friendly Metal 3D Printing
Designed as an end-to-end solution, the Desktop Metal Studio System is the only way to print complex metal parts in-house. The system comes with purchase and subscription pricing options, and it is by far the only metal 3D printing system that is cost-effective for engineering teams.
DM Production System: Metal 3D Printing at Scale
Next to the DM Studio System, the Desktop Metal Production system delivers the speed, quality, and cost-per-part needed to compete with traditional manufacturing processes. Arriving in 2018, this breakthrough Single Pass Jetting (SPJ) process delivers speeds up to 8200 cm3/hr. It is 100x faster than laser-based systems. With zero-tooling needed, it’s the fastest way to manufacture complex metal parts.
The system runs low-cost with MIM powder, comes with a high throughput, and simple post-processing deliver per-part costs that are competitive with traditional manufacturing processes.
3D Printing Metal Breakthrough
A breaktrough in the world of 3D Printing Metal, which will offer great next advantages for the lighting industry. We keep following this young start-up with great interest!
ION 3D Printed Lampshade by David Münscher: Inspired by Curved Paper Folding
Designer David Münscher has created two lampion shaped lampshades, that use principles of curved paper folding to create a thin, but rigid light object. The ION 3D printed Lampshades are a great fit for any interior design!
ION – 3D Printed Lampion Shape
Due to the layer structure of the 3D printing process the resulting shade has a paper like structure, that reveals itself fully when lit.
The lampshade design draws its inspiration from a classic lampion shape, hence the name – ION.
Focused Spot & Dispersed Mood Lighting
During daytime the bright white, curved shape adds a clean, yet homely accent to an interior. When turned on in the evening ION illuminates the space with a warm, soft glow to the sides and
a focused spot of light underneath.
Floor and Table Lamp Flexibility
ION is available in two sizes and lends itself to be hung as a single lamp or in groups, forming lines or clusters. By the use of a lamp stand the shades can also be turned into a floor or table
Soft Shine and Evoked Fabric Feelings
The pendant light is 3D printed on demand in a thin nylon 3D printing material. The fine layers of the printing process produce a matt finished, paper like structure. Both, ION and the smaller ION S lampshades are now available via oxique.com.
Pictures in this post are courtesy of David Münscher.
U RoK Design Studio: Create Unusual Designs that please the World and Living Space around us
U RoK Design, a family-owned design-maker studio, is based in Stourbridge, UK. The practice was founded in September 2014 by the Latvian designer-maker Roberts Kulins. The author of ‘idea and concept’ is passionate about creating unusual design objects and finding new ways that make the world and living space around us more pleasant.
Nordic Asperity, Creativity and Style
Natural and sustainable materials feature, along with nature primordialism, Nordic asperity, creative and ascetic style all at the same time – it are the influences of the designer’s place of birth. The lighting products in this post are made by using cutting edge 3D printing technologies.
Hand Made 3D Printed Lighting
U RoK Design offers a wide variety of 3D printed lighting products. The collection varies from classic wooden suspension lamps to raw steel industrial style luminaries. The lamps fit equally well in the modern urban home as well as in a country cottage. The aim of U RoK Design is to create products that are pleasant in experience, suitable for every application, reasonable in price and an accessible for everyone.
Lighting made Perfect together!
U RoK Design provides tailored design products and services, and is always happy to work with customers that have special requests. Match products to specific customer desires and needs is their ultimate work.
All Kulins‘ products are handmade in the UK and as unique as your fingerprint!
Philips Lighting 3D Printing Research: Can novel AM Technologies boost a Declining Lamp Business?
Recently, Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) Belgium investigated the value of additive manufacturing for Philips Lighting’s. The deep-going and multi-disciplinary Philips Lighting 3D Printing Research on the spare part supply chain, is an excellent example how additive manufacturing technologies could renew a traditional business. Therefore, we happily republish a part of the article as published by PwC, for your inspiration!
The Philips Lighting 3D Printing Research – Project Challenges
The fabrication of high-intensity discharge (HID) lamps is an activity within the lighting industry that declines by up to 20% per year. Thanks to the coming of more sustainable and even more powerful LED light sources, conventional lamps – especially those consuming a lot of energy and heat – face a huge backdrop in sales volumes. End users change ‘en-masse’ from energy consuming items to energy savers, a logical and ecology-friendly choice.
Philips Lighting Turnhout Challenges
It places Philips Lighting in Turnhout in front of serious challenges in how to turn it’s conventional HID business into a healthy one. The maintenance budget on its turn, mirrors the global drop in sales volumes. As a result, the business needs to get creative in finding ways to increase efficiency and decrease costs if it’s to not just maintain, but increase its share of the sector, and that’s where novel 3D printing technologies comes in.
Managing SKU’s and Site Complexity
Philips Lighting has a huge portfolio of over 46,000 stock keeping units (SKUs) that are required to keep the site in Turnhout operational. That ties up a massive 5% of the firm’s annual revenue in spare part inventory alone. Next to that, the site’s annual maintenance and repair budget is estimated at 3%. Not only is the massive stock costly keep and manage, it also creates complexity. And when machines are upgraded or changed, some parts become obsolete and can no longer be used, so are simply wasted.
Business Opportunities of 3D printing
To help find a solution – and free up financial resources to use elsewhere in the business, Philips Lighting asked PwC to investigate the business potential for 3D printing in its overall spare part supply chain.
PwC first mapped the supply chain to find where 3D printing could have an impact on supply chain processes. As a basis for the research, four main areas were identified:
Based upon this approach, it became very clear that 3D printing could indeed provide significant opportunities for optimising the spare part supply chain.
Enhanced Shape Complexity, increased Lifetime and Multi-Material Units
3D printing allows to create shapes that aren’t possible with traditional fabrication. It specifically means that functionality of products can be enhanced and the lifetime of a unit can be increased siginificantly. Moreover, it is now possible to create units by using less material, and have less waste at the same time, thus saving cost.
Additionally, units can now be made out of different metals or materials in order to increase the durability. It also contributes to reduce repair time for machines, as parts now get available on site in a minimum timeframe. 3D printing technology also enables rapid prototyping and more fast and flexible design iterations, helping shorten the product development cycle, all resulting in an improved design.
The Unique Capabilities of 3D Printing Applied to the Philips Lighting Business
With 3D printing, it’s also easier to involve internal and external stakeholders in the process. The ability to print a unit on demand as when required means there no longer needs to be a physical stock (the stock is digital, in fact), and no upfront investments are needed. This helps to reduce working capital, reduce the risk of obsolescence and easy iterations can be implemented when the design parts need to be changed, even during the product development cycle.
The short lead times of units is a significant benefit, and with that the need for transport of finished goods is cut away. One of the major advantages of 3D printing is that complex assemblies can be printed in one single process, eliminating points of failure where there were previously joins, again reducing repair time and costs. Complexity is free!
By applying the knowledge of the 3D printing business, as well as bringing the right market players together in this research, PwC proved its added value and expertise in the field of 3D printing technology. Amongst them providers of 3D Printing software, 3D printing services and a specialist in 3D printing materials, such as metals that enriched and facilitated the implementation of the research.
Putting Ideas into Practice
The entire Philips stock level of a total of 46,778 SKUs was filtered according to set criteria to identify which units could be positively impacted by additive fabrication. These criteria included:
♦ Lead time (until delivery);
♦ Minimum order quantity (MOQ);
♦ Intellectual Property (IP) ownership;
♦ Product size;
With such an immense amount of data to analyse, PwC called in their data analytics experts to help, which made the process very efficient and was much appreciated by the client.
The above criteria brought the viable number of units to 9% of the product portfolio, which make up 18% of the inventory value. From these, five spare parts were selected to trial, each with different supply chain drivers. For each of those units, the annual operational costs were mapped, the part redesigned (where deemed necessary), 3D printed and tested. Finally, the business case calculated.
Business Case: Proving the Point
The business case for the five 3D printed parts represented an expected 30% reduction in OPEX costs and saw an increase in the lifetime of the units and an improved quality process. As such, it’s shown that 3D printing offers significant potential to improve the spare part supply chain at Philips Lighting in Turnhout, from both technical and supply chain perspectives. However, given the specific nature of the project and parts in question, the results cannot be extrapolated to the rest of the inventory, each part needs to be investigated separately.
Future 3D Printing Development
The further development of 3D printing capabilities at Philips Lighting in Turnhout is still under investigation with technicians already looking for new units that may be positively impacted by the technology. The aim is to continue to build up a library of viable examples where 3D printing can positively influence the business and save much-needed costs, helping to further increase the buy-in of stakeholders.
Despite the impressive results of the Philips Lighting 3D Printing Research, there are still obstacles to overcome before 3D printing can be further implemented. It takes a lot of time to finalise a full spare part case due to the amount of time required for iterations, testing and capability building. However, the actual project was successful in demonstrating that 3D printing can transform the supply chain for spare parts over the longer term.
Project learnings are also being shared with other Philips Lighting facilities around the world to see if it’s viable to embed 3D printing into the company’s overall parts management approach.
The 3D Printing Eleven for Lighting Profs
Finally, we recommend you reading also The 3D Printing Eleven: a comprehensive range of articles covering the unique benefits of 3D printing for the lighting industry. The Philips Lighting 3D printing research is a perfect example of how lighting companies can optimally benefit from this new way of making. A better understanding of the 3D printing movement will certainly contribute in removing the ‘fear’ factor of the unknown for engineers working with 3D printing in your own company.
The reorganisation of Philips Lighting Belgium into a more efficient and future-oriented organisation also comes with the birth of new initiatives on the site, such as the inspiring Open Manufacturing Campus. High Tech Start-Ups, such as Luxexcel, find their way to the inspiring and well-facilitated industrial environment!
This article about the Philips Lighting 3D Printing Research was inspired by the official PWC publication, pictures in this post are courtesy of Philips Lighting / PWC and 3DPrinting.Lighting.
AE12 Binder Jetting: Extremely Economical Production of Functional Plastic Parts
Additive elements GmbH has presented development results at FormNext 2016. The new process enables the production of dense plastic parts using AE12 Binder Jetting 3D printers.
Currently, Binder Jetting lets you build only porous parts in gypsum or molding forms in sand. The process either needs a post building treatment, like the infiltration with epoxy, or is meant to create parts that are easy to destroy after casting procedures. This is where the new material system AE12 gets relevant. It enables the extremely economical production of functional plastic parts.
“AE12 BINDER JETTING system enable AN extremely economical production of functional plastic parts”
Finally it will be possible to use the Binder Jetting technology for direct additive manufacturing of high quality parts. “The biggest challenge was to reduce the porosity of the built parts to a minimum.” says development manager Johannes Günther.
The material system is based on PMMA, also known as acrylics. The binder is mixed with additives, that polymerize after the building process and close the part to create the highest possible density. The unprinted powder can be completely reused. That creates further advantages compared to existing 3D printing technologies.
The scalability to larger machines allows, in theory, to produce parts that are a few meters big – at the moment almost impossible in any traditional production process. Parts made in AE12 won’t be used for extreme mechanical use cases, but functional end products are definitely a target application.
AE12 was initially developed for Voxeljet machines, but will be useable on other Binder Jetting systems, too.
Beta Tests are Running
Beta customers are testing the material until in mid-2017 it will be accessible to the public. Samples are available on demand via Additive Elements. The process should let to additive manufacturing take the next step into the direction of serial production. Plastic parts will be producible at a fraction of costs of the established 3D printing technologies. For a lot of industries, this is the major criteria for adapting additive manufacturing.
Until market launch AE12 will be parametrized to even larger machines and different Binder Jetting systems.
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