Energy Drink Doses Of Caffeine And Taurine Have A Null Or Negative Effect On Sprint Performance

This study investigated the effects of caffeine and taurine co-ingestion on repeat-sprint cycling performance and associated physiological and perceptual responses. In a double blind, cross-over, repeated measures study, 11 male participants (age 21 ± 2 years; stature 178 ± 7 cm; body mass 80 ± 13 kg) completed 10 x 6-s sprints on a cycle ergometer, each separated by 24-s, an hour after ingesting: caffeine (80 mg) and taurine (1 g), equivalent to the amount observed in popular commercial energy drinks, or placebo (maltodextrin ∼1 g) in a gelatine capsule. Performance was measured on a cycle ergometer, whilst blood lactate concentration (B[la]), rating of perceived exertion (RPE) and heart rate (HR) were measured at baseline (pre-exercise) and after sprints 5 and 10. Magnitude-based inferences revealed likely, trivial differences in peak power and unclear, trivial inter-sprint fatigue index after ingestion of the caffeine and taurine supplement. Intra-sprint fatigue was greater in the caffeine and taurine condition at sprint 10 (likely, small) and possibly smaller in sprints 6-9. The caffeine and taurine supplement had a likely large effect on HR at baseline (ES = 0.94) and increases in B[la] after sprint 5 (likely small) and 10 (possibly small). There was no effect of the supplement on RPE (unclear, trivial). Administration of caffeine and taurine at doses equivalent to commercial energy drinks did not improve repeat-sprint cycling performance and appeared to induce greater fatigue within selected sprints, particularly at the end of the trial. This undesirable performance effect occurs in parallel with increased HR and glycolytic metabolic bi-products.
Corresponding author: Owen.Jeffries@stmarys.ac.uk, T: +44 (0)2082404233, School of Sport, Health and Applied Science, St Mary’s University, Waldegrave Road, Twickenham, London. TW1 4SX
Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.

Hasbro beseitigt Kunststoffverpackungen

[Source: forbes.com]

Charles Goulding und Peter Favata von R & D Tax Savers, untersuchen die möglichen Auswirkungen von Hasbros Maßnahme auf die 3D-Druckindustrie.

Dieser Artikel ist auch in englischer Sprache hier erhältlich / This article also available in English here.

HASBRO GEHT GRÜN

Hasbro, der große Spielzeug- und Spielehersteller, hat kürzlich angekündigt, ab 2020 keine Kunststoffverpackungen mehr verwenden zu wollen. Diese Innovation wird zwar nicht die Plastikspielzeuge selbst betreffen, die häufig mithilfe von 3D-Druckern entworfen werden. Dennoch könnte diese aber Auswirkungen auf die Zukunft haben, welche die 3D-Druckindustrie einplanen muss.

In der Pressemitteilung von Hasbro heißt es, dass “Kunststoff aus neuen Produktverpackungen, einschließlich Kunststoffelementen wie Polybeuteln, Gummibändern, Schrumpffolien, Fensterfolien und Blisterverpackungen, ausgemustert wird”. Das Unternehmen plant Ende 2020 keine Kunststoffverpackungen mehr zu verwenden. Dies ist nicht das erste Mal, dass sich Hasbro für ökologische Nachhaltigkeit einsetzt. 2010 haben sie Kabelbinder aus ihren Produkten gestrichen und 2016 die How2Recycle-Kennzeichnung hinzugefügt. Die Beseitigung von Kunststoff aus Spielzeugverpackungen ist ein wichtiges neues Produkt- und Verfahrensvorhaben, welches für R&D Tax Savers Kredite infrage kommen sollte.

AUSWIRKUNGEN AUF DIE ZUKUNFT

Wir nehmen an, dass Hasbro, sobald es nachhaltige Materialien entwickelt hat, welche den gesamten Kunststoff in der Verpackung ersetzen können, dieses neue Wissen auf die zugrunde liegenden Herstellungsprozesse überträgt. Diese werden häufig von Drittherstellern durchgeführt.

Derzeit sind viele dieser Spielzeughersteller in China, aber die “Handelskriege” und Zölle zwingen die Industrie, nach Lieferanten in anderen Ländern zu suchen. Diese Verpackungsänderung findet statt, während Hasbro auch die Verlagerung der Kundeströme vom früheren Toys R Us zu Walmart, Target, Amazon und anderen Einzelhändlern bewältigt.

Wir schlagen vor, dass Designer, welche 3D druckbares Spielzeug herstellen ihr Wissen über alternative und nachhaltige Materialien erweitern sollten. 3D-Druck ist ein wichtiger Teil der Spielwarenbranche und muss diese breit angelegte Veränderung in einem der größten Märkte verstehen und nutzen. Bei Redaktionsschluss dieses Artikels gab Hasbro die Vereinbarung bekannt, Entertainment One Ltd., ein Film- und Fernsehunternehmen, für 4 Milliarden US-Dollar zu erwerben. Der CEO von Hasbro gab an, dass die Marken sehr gut verkäuflich sind, was eine neue Linie von Markenspielzeugen bedeuten könnte.

DER FORSCHUNGS- UND ENTWICKLUNG STEUER-KREDIT

1981 wurde das Programm Forschungs und Entwicklungs Steuerkredit vom Bund etabliert und ermöglich seitdem einen Steuerbegünstigung, welche in der Regel zwischen 4% und 7% der förderfähigen Ausgaben für neue und verbesserte Produkte und Verfahren liegt. Qualifizierte Forschung muss die folgenden vier Kriterien erfüllen:

  • Muss technologischer Natur sein

  • Muss ein Bestandteil des Geschäfts des Steuerzahlers sein

  • Muss für Forschung und Entwicklung im experimentellen Sinne stehen und schließt im Allgemeinen alle Kosten ein, die mit der Entwicklung oder Verbesserung eines Produkts oder Prozesses verbunden sind

  • Muss alle Zweifel durch einen Experimentierprozess beseitigen, der eine oder mehrere Alternativen in Betracht zieht

Zu den zuschussfähigen Kosten gehören die Löhne der US-Mitarbeiter, die Kosten für im F & E-Prozess verbrauchte Materialien, die Kosten für Tests vor der Produktion, die Kosten für Auftragsforschung in den USA und bestimmte Kosten im Zusammenhang mit der Erlangung eines Patents.

Am 18. Dezember 2015 unterzeichnete Präsident Obama den PATH Act, womit die F & E-Steuerbegünstigung dauerhaft wurde. Ab 2016 können mit dem F & E-Guthaben alternative Mindeststeuern für Unternehmen mit einem Umsatz von weniger als 50 Millionen US-Dollar verrechnet werden. Start-ups können bis zu 250.000 US-Dollar pro Jahr an Lohnsteuerrabatten erhalten.

Original English-language article: Hasbro To Eliminate Plastic Packaging, by Charles Goulding and Peter Favata of R&D Tax Savers.

This translation provided by Sebastian Kolpert, who runs a 3D printing service at kolbers.de. Furthermore he is blogging about filaments for 3D printing over at spool-database.info.

Diese Übersetzung stammt von Sebastian Kolpert, der bei kolbers.de einen 3D-Druckservice betreibt. Außerdem bloggt er unter spool-database.info über Filamente für den 3D-Druck.

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An Examination of the Relationship Between the Functional Movement Screen, Landing Error Scoring System, and 3D Kinematic Data During a Drop Jump Task

Everard, E, Lyons, M, and Harrison, AJ. An examination of the relationship between the functional movement screen, landing error scoring system and 3D kinematic data during a drop jump task. J Strength Cond Res XX(X): 000–000, 2019—Tests such as the Functional Movement Screen (FMS) and Landing Error Scoring System (LESS) have become an established component of preparticipation screening. Despite their practical use, there is a lack of empirical evidence examining their relationship to established assessments of movement, such as 3D kinematics of a drop jump. Fifty-two male collegiate athletes undertook the LESS, FMS, and a drop jump where 3D lower-limb kinematic variables were assessed. Spearman correlations were conducted to examine the relationship between LESS, FMS, and drop-jump 3D kinematic variables. A series of independent t-tests examined differences in hip and knee kinematic variables in acceptable and poor FMS and LESS groups as determined by established cut-off scores. Landing Error Scoring System scores had significant moderate correlations with most kinematic variables (r = 0.35–0.64; p < 0.01). Subjects with poor LESS scores displayed significantly worse lower-limb kinematics compared with their high-scoring counterparts (effect size = 1.99–2.76, large effect). There were significant moderate correlations with maximal hip and knee flexion (r = 0.46 and 0.39 respectively; p < 0.01) and small or nonsignificant correlations between all other kinematic variables and FMS scores. Hip flexion and knee valgus at maximal displacement were the only kinematic variables significantly different between FMS groups (ES = 0.70–0.72, small-to-moderate effect). The results confirm limitations in the ability of the FMS to distinguish between groups for landing biomechanics.
Address correspondence to Eoin Everard, eoin.everard@ul.ie.
Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.

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Antigenic pressure on H3N2 influenza drift strains imposes constraints on binding to sialylated receptors, but not phosphorylated glycans [Virus-Cell Interactions]

H3N2 strains of influenza A virus emerged in humans in 1968 and have continued to circulate, evolving in response to human immune pressure. During this process of “antigenic drift,” viruses have progressively lost the ability to agglutinate erythrocytes of various species and to replicate efficiently under the established conditions for amplifying clinical isolates and generating vaccine candidates. We have determined the glycome profiles of chicken and guinea pig erythrocytes to gain insights into reduced agglutination properties displayed by drifted strains and show that both contain complex sialylated N-glycans, but they differ with respect to the extent of branching, core fucosylation, and the abundance of poly-N-acetyllactosamine (PL) [-3Galβ1-4GlcNAcβ1-]n structures. We also examined binding of the H3N2 viruses using three different glycan microarrays: the synthetic Consortium for Functional Glycomics array, the defined N-glycan array designed to reveal contributions to binding based on sialic acid linkage type, branched structures, and core modifications, and the human lung shotgun glycan microarray. The results demonstrate that H3N2 viruses have progressively lost their capacity to bind nearly all canonical sialylated receptors other than a selection of bi-antennary structures and PL structures with or without sialic acid. Significantly, all viruses displayed robust binding to non-sialylated high mannose phosphorylated glycans, even as the recognition of sialylated structures is decreased through antigenic drift.

Importance

Influenza H3N2 subtype viruses have circulated in humans for over 50 years, continuing to cause annual epidemics. Such viruses have undergone antigenic drift in response to immune pressure, reducing the protective effects of pre-existing immunity to previously circulating H3N2 strains. The changes in HA affiliated with drift have implications for the receptor binding properties of these viruses, affecting virus replication in culture systems commonly used to generate and amplify vaccine strains. Therefore, the antigenic properties of the vaccines may not directly reflect those of the circulating strains from which they were derived, compromising vaccine efficacy. In order to reproducibly provide effective vaccines, it will be critical to understand the interrelationships between binding, antigenicity, and replication properties in different growth substrates.

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Strength and Conditioning Habits of Competitive Distance Runners

Blagrove, RC, Brown, N, Howatson, G, and Hayes, PR. Strength and conditioning habits of competitive distance runners. J Strength Cond Res XX(X): 000–000, 2017—Targeted strength and conditioning (S&C) programs can potentially improve performance and reduce injury risk factors in competitive runners. However, S&C practices of distance runners are unknown. This study aimed to explore S&C practices of competitive middle- and long-distance runners and examined whether reported frequency of injuries was influenced by training behaviors. One thousand eight hundred eighty-three distance runners (≥15 years old) completed an online survey. All runners who raced competitively were included in data analysis (n = 667). Distance runners mainly engaged with S&C activities to lower risk of injury (63.1%) and improve performance (53.8%). The most common activities used were stretching (86.2%) and core stability exercises (70.2%). Resistance training (RT) and plyometric training (PT) were used by 62.5 and 35.1% of runners, respectively. Junior (under-20) runners include PT, running drills, and circuit training more so than masters runners. Significantly more international standard runners engaged in RT, PT, and fundamental movement skills training compared with competitive club runners. Middle-distance (800–3,000 m) specialists were more likely to include RT, PT, running drills, circuit training, and barefoot exercises in their program than longer-distance runners. Injury frequency was associated with typical weekly running volume and run frequency. Strength and conditioning did not seem to confer a protection against the number of injuries the runners experienced. Practitioners working with distance runners should critically evaluate the current S&C practices of their athletes, to ensure that activities prescribed have a sound evidence-based rationale.
Address correspondence to Richard C. Blagrove, richard.blagrove@bcu.ac.uk.
Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.

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Mink Enteritis Virus Infection Induces Mitochondrion-mediated Apoptosis by the Viral Nonstructural Protein 1 [Virus-Cell Interactions]

Mink enteritis virus (MEV), an autonomous parvovirus, causes acute hemorrhagic enteritis in minks. The molecular pathogenesis of MEV infection has not been fully understood. In this study, we observed a significantly increased apoptosis in the esophagus, small intestine, mesenteric lymph nodes, and kidney in minks experimentally infected with MEVB strain (MEVB). In vitro infection of MEVB in feline F81 cells decreased cell viability, induced cell cycle arrest at G1 phase, and apoptosis. By screening MEV nonstructural proteins (NS1 and NS2) and structural proteins (VP1 and VP2), we demonstrated that the MEV NS1 induced apoptosis in both F81 and human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293T cells, similar to that induced during MEV infection in minks. We found that the NS1 protein induced apoptosis in HEK293T cells was not mediated by the death receptor but the mitochondrial pathway, as demonstrated by mitochondrial depolarization, opening of mitochondrial transition pore, release of cytochrome C, and activation of caspase-9 and -3. Moreover, in NS1-transfected cells, we observed an increase of Bax expression and its translocation to the mitochondria, as well as an increased ratio of the Bax/Bcl-2, ROS production, and activated p38 MAPK and p53. Taken together, our results demonstrated that MEV induces apoptosis through activation of p38 MAPK and the p53-mediated mitochondrial apoptotic pathway induced by NS1 protein, which sheds light on the molecular pathogenesis of MEV-infection.

IMPORTANCE

MEV causes fatal hemorrhagic enteritis in minks. Apoptosis is a cellular mechanism that effectively sacrifices virus-infected cells to maintain homeostasis between the virus and host. In this study, we demonstrated that MEV induces apoptosis both in vivo and in vitro. Mechanistically, the viral large nonstructural protein NS1 activates p38 MAPK that leads p53 phosphorylation to mediate the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway, but not the death receptor-mediated apoptotic pathway. This is the first report to uncover the mechanism underlying MEV-induced apoptosis.

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Hasbro To Eliminate Plastic Packaging

[Source: forbes.com]

Charles Goulding and Peter Favata of R&D Tax Savers examine the potential impact of Hasbro’s move to eliminate plastic packaging on the 3D printing industry.

Hasbro Going Green

Hasbro, the large toy and game manufacturer, has just announced that it will start to eliminate plastic packaging beginning in 2020. Although this innovation will not involve its core plastic toys that are often designed by 3D printers, at this time, it could portend future changes that the 3D printing industry must plan for.

Hasbro’s news release states they will be “phasing out plastic from new product packaging, including plastic elements like polybags, elastic bands, shrink wrap, window sheets, and blister packs.” The company plans to eliminate all plastic packaging by the end of 2020. This is not the first time Hasbro has been committed to environmental sustainability; in 2010 they eliminated wire ties from their products and adding How2Recycle labeling in 2016. Eliminating plastic from toy packaging is a major new product and process endeavor that should be eligible for R&D tax credits.

Impact on the Future

We predict that once Hasbro develops sustainable materials it can substitute for all the plastic in packaging it will transfer this new knowledge to its underlying manufacturing processes which are often handled by third-party manufacturers.

Currently, many of these toy manufacturers are in China but the trade wars and tariffs are forcing the industry to look at alternative country suppliers. This packaging change is occurring while Hasbro is also managing the shift in customer base from the former Toys R Us to Walmart, Target, Amazon and other retailers.

We would suggest that 3D printed toy designers should ramp up their knowledge about alternative sustainable materials. The 3D printing sector is a major participant in the toy industry and needs to understand and benefit from this broad-based change in one of its largest markets. As this article went to press, Hasbro has announced their agreement to purchase Entertainment One Ltd., a film and television company, for $4 billion. Hasbro’s CEO indicated that the brands are very merchandisable which may mean a new line of branded toys.

The Research & Development Tax Credit

Enacted in 1981, the now permanent Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a credit that typically ranges from 4%-7% of eligible spending for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:

  • Must be technological in nature

  • Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business

  • Must represent R&D in the experimental sense and generally includes all such costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process

  • Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives

Eligible costs include US employee wages, cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, cost of pre-production testing, US contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with developing a patent.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D Tax Credit permanent. Beginning in 2016, the R&D credit can be used to offset Alternative Minimum tax for companies with revenue below $50MM and, startup businesses can obtain up to $250,000 per year in payroll tax cash rebates. 

 

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Carbon Keeps 3D Printing In The Saddle With fizik

A cyclist on a fizik bicycle with an Adaptive seat [Image: Carbon]

DLS 3D printing stays sporty with another collaborative creation for cyclists.

Carbon and fizik have announced a partnership to create the latter’s first digitally manufactured bicycle saddle — and Carbon’s second, on the heels of last week’s introduction with Specialized.

Adaptive

The fizik Adaptive saddle created with DLS [Image: Carbon]

The fizik Adaptive saddle created with DLS [Image: Carbon]

The bike saddle is called Adaptive, which fizik describes as “a new range of performance cycling saddles offering seamlessly engineered zonal cushioning, support and power transfer properties.”

Who wouldn’t want zonal cushioning as part of their cycling experience?

The creation falls under fizik’s cross-disciplinary Concepts initiative to bring more high performance, advanced technologies to its innovations for cyclists through industry and academic collaboration.

Innovation doesn’t come cheap, nor does high-end cycling; as with Specialized, the price range for fizik’s saddles is commensurate with the professional market. Road cycling saddles from fizik, the category that includes the new Adaptive, are priced between about €99-350. For now, Adaptive is simply labelled as “coming soon” with no pricing nor specific timeline specified; presumably it will fall under the relatively higher priced products.

The Tech Behind The Seat


fizik-ADAPTIVE-5a.jpg


fizik-ADAPTIVE-7a.jpg

There’s a lot of technology in Adaptive.

The new saddle is based on the Versus Evo 00 platform, described as “a fully carbon fiber performance racing saddle that delivers power transfer and light weight in a full channel design that offers soft tissue pressure relief.” It is also a step toward a potentially more adaptive future for later-generation Adaptive designs that may be fully personalized using consumers’ data gathered in-store to create individual pressure maps.

For now, the pressure mapping data is broader, with nine years’ worth of professional cyclists’ data used to create this initial design.

“Digital Light Synthesis unlocks a new era in saddle design and manufacturing, driven by athlete data and agile manufacturing processes. It means we can fully release our creativity — transforming not just what we make, but how we make it, bringing a whole new way of thinking to cycling saddles. Our aim is to provide riders with bespoke performance products tailored to their individual biodynamic data,” said fizik Brand Director Luca Mathia Bertoncello.

The saddle, presumably also designed for production on Carbon’s large L1 3D printer, features lattice-style padding using EPU 41 material, as seen with the Specialized saddle. The flexible, strong material is proving its viability in these sporty applications that require attention to athletic needs like power transfer, shock absorption, stability, and comfort.

 “fizik used the Carbon Lattice Engine to match optimized response profiles based on rider feedback and create a digitally tuned lattice geometry for the Adaptive — enabling differentiation based on their unique product vision and design,” noted Erika Berg, Head of Application Development at Carbon.

Carbon’s dedication to increasingly personalized sporting goods is apparent, as is the scale at which such products are being made. While bike saddles and helmets remain something of a niche, the company’s first foray into mass-produced athletic wear remains a shining testament to a broadly appealing product line that proves out the viability of 3D printing in a scale manufacturing environment.

Via Carbon and fizik

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Will Digital Metal's New Superalloys Mark The Beginning Of A Metal Battle?

One of Digital Metal’s high-precision metal 3D printers [Source: Fabbaloo]

Digital Metal announced two new superalloys for use in their metal 3D printers, and I think this is a very interesting beginning.

There’s a few things to understand before we get into the new materials. First, Digital Metal’s 3D printing process is a bit different. While most metal 3D printers use a powder bed / laser process in which the laser creates a small moving meltpool, Digital Metal’s process involves binder jetting. The parts are 3D printed with binder without heat. Then, after printing, the object is heated in a furnace to burn off the binder and sinter the metal particles together.

The second thing to understand is that Digital Metal is actually a subsidiary of Höganäs Group, a Swedish company that has produced metal powder for industry for decades. Other subsiduaries of Höganäs Group actually produce the powder used in Digital Metal’s equipment.

Small metal parts made on Digital Metal’s high precision metal 3D printers [Source: Fabbaloo]

Small metal parts made on Digital Metal’s high precision metal 3D printers [Source: Fabbaloo]

Digital Metal Stainless Steel

The Digital Metal 3D printer previously used only the more common stainless steel 316L & 17-4PH and Ti6Al4V metals. These materials are frequently used in other metal 3D printers.

Now they have announced the addition of two superalloys. A superalloy is a specialized metal that exhibits extraordinary performance in one or more engineering properties. The new introductions are called DM 247 and DM 625.

Wait, you’re not familiar with these two metals? That’s not surprising, because they are brand new superalloys custom-designed by Höganäs Group.

DM 625 is an Inconel 625-grade material, but the DM 247 material is far more interesting, because it’s a non-weldable material.

3D Printing Non-Weldable Metals

Let’s think about this for a second: powder bed / laser metal 3D printers essentially use a welding process to fuse material. The moving meltpool literally heats the powdered metal to the melting point where it swiftly cools and solidifies after the laser passes by.

A non-weldable material is chemically difficult or impossible to weld. For example, if an alloy contained a significant amount of carbon, that carbon might be burnt off during welding (or lasering), changing the chemical state of the alloy after the powder is fused. Thus such a material is not weldable nor 3D printable — in powder bed laser systems.

That’s where Digital Metal has a significant advantage: their 3D printing process does not involve heat. The non-weldable material can be 3D printed with ease, and then carefully sintered at the precise temperatures to avoid chemical alteration. The other advantage of the sintering process is that heating is done all at the same temperature throughout the part, thus avoiding temperature gradients and warping effects that can plague other approaches.

Digital Metal’s Advantage

So it seems that Digital Metal has a significant advantage here: they can 3D print many non-weldable materials successfully, and they have their own materials.

Since the sources of the powder and the 3D printer manufacturing are essentially the same company, they can now create unique materials that, if they choose, could be used only on their own equipment. This opens up the possibility of a future “war” between metal 3D printer vendors over unique materials.

The advantage may pass to metal 3D printer companies having strong partnerships or ownership of metal powder producers.

Via Digital Metal

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Another “World’s First” 3D Printed Bridge

The lightweight 3D printed FRP pedestrian bridge prototype [Image: DSM]

It’s not the world’s first 3D printed bridge.

It’s not the first 3D printed pedestrian bridge, nor the first 3D printed polymer bridge. But a new lightweight 3D printed bridge is still noteworthy.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be the first of its kind to be notable. Time will tell, of course, if this particular bridge is the best of its kind, or the gateway to more of its kind.

3D Printed FRP Bridge

A segment of the 3D printed bridge [Image: Royal HaskoningDHV]

A segment of the 3D printed bridge [Image: Royal HaskoningDHV]

The latest bridge prototype grabbing 3D printing headlines comes from a collaboration from engineering and project management consultancy Royal HaskoningDHV, global materials and general science company DSM, and large-scale 3D printing equipment supplier CEAD.

So what is new about this structure? Maurice Kardas, Business Development Manager at Royal HaskoningDHV, explains: 

“This partnership is bringing about a paradigm shift in the way we think about the form and function of bridges in our society. FRP bridges are already well known for having a longer lifetime expectancy with lower life cycle costs compared to steel bridges. What’s new here is the use of a new 3D printing technology, enabling us to print large scale continuous fibre reinforced thermoplastic parts. Using this new composite thermoplastic material, we will be ushering in a new era for sustainability and push the boundaries of bridge functionality even further.

By including sensors in the design, we are able to build a digital twin of the bridge. These sensors can predict and optimise maintenance, ensure safety and extend the life span of our bridges. It can also incorporate new functionalities such as monitoring vital environmental aspects and improve the decision-making process for maintenance and inspection via dynamic real-time reports on the condition of the bridge. In collaboration with these industry leaders, we are transforming the traditional playbook when it comes to bridge design and construction.”

Picking through this (and ignoring the “paradigm shift” aspect), we see that the structure is an FRP pedestrian bridge — that is, a fiber-reinforced polymer bridge.

It’s 3D printed using a composite material that the release notes is a glass-filled thermoplastic PET combined with continuous glass fibers. That PET is Arnite, a high-strength material from DSM — strengthened even further and designed to be 3D printed.

Arnite, DSM notes, is more sustainable than other material options and offers more design versatility. DSM has been highly attuned to the drive in 3D printing toward sustainability, and so is underscoring that the materials used for this bridge are recyclable, as well as used only in required amounts due to the less wasteful additive manufacturing process.

Going on in Kardas’ explanation, we see that the large-scale 3D printing is key — and that’s where CEAD comes in.

The Dutch company has been progressing in its work with continuous fiber additive manufacturing, offering a high-strength, large-scale 3D printing process. According to the team, applications like this bridge are exactly why they have been developing that process: 

“This 3D printed bridge prototype demonstrates the huge strides that we are making which will transform the future of this industry, not only speeding up construction, but also making the process more cost and time efficient. We developed this technology for exactly these industry applications, making them more sustainable and easier to manufacture,” said CEAD CEO Maarten Logtenberg.

CEAD and DSM are working closely on optimization of the material and 3D printing via predictive modeling to bring the Royal HaskoningDHV bridge design to fruitful life.

3D Printed Structures

We spend a lot of time examining (and debunking) claims of 3D printing applications in construction.

The application area is certainly interesting and growing — and very, very real. But it’s often still overly built up (pun intended).

This bridge, for example, seems a good stepping stone toward more structures that can be constructed, possibly in place, for pedestrian access.

But it’s still a prototype. Just like work in 3D printing other usable structures, there clearly remains work to be done.

Industry 4.0 Progress

And just like work in such applications, it stands as testament to progress being made in Industry 4.0.

The bridge combines a few major areas of Industry 4.0: 3D printing, composite materials, sustainable development, generative design, predictive modeling, digital twins, collaborative co-creation.

Also notably, the three partners working on this bridge are all Dutch.

While a large benefit of this next Industrial Revolution is that virtual collaboration is increasingly possible, there’s still much to be said for localization of all resources. Some of the most interesting partnerships we’ve seen have sprung into being due to proximity, and surely there are other benefits that can be taken advantage of for such work (think taxes, shipping, face-to-face time, government support, etc.).

Additionally, the Netherlands has been quite a hub of 3D printing bridges, including MX3D’s storied stainless steel structure. Perhaps before too long the canals of Amsterdam will see more of their bridges 3D printed?

This 3D printed FRP pedestrian bridge prototype is very interesting — as a work-in-progress, if not quite as a blanket “world’s first.”

Via DSM

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