Digital Fabrication Labs
AET Labs is the exclusive representative for Pensa DiWire in the New England states. DiWire is a unique solution for educators in product design, architecture, fine art, and engineering.
This week AET Labs exhibited technical training, FAB lab and 3D printing solutions at the second annual Tri-State CTE Directors Conference in Portsmouth, NH. Technology Consulant Andrew Mercer discussses Polyjet printing with an attendee.
Extreme Redesign Competition and Digital Fabrication Showcase March 2nd, 2016 on the WPI Campus Steve Chomyszak – Wentworth Institute of Technology Faculty, Mechanical Engineering Department and Director of EPIC Learning – Co-Founder and CTO of Mechanology, Inc. – Co-Recipient of the William E. Roberts Endowed Professorship – Stratasys’ Global 3D Printing Curriculum team writer and instructor – Ambassador to Wentworth’s Accelerate Program AETLabs is very pleased to announce that Steven Chomyszak has agreed to be our guest speaker at WPI for our Digital Fabrication Showcase on March 2nd. Steve was the co-founder and CTO of Mechanology, Inc. which grew to a 30 person technology company developing high efficiency positive displacement compressors and expanders along with steam turbines ranging in power from 150 kW to 3.5 MW. Steve has worked on and managed numerous multi-million dollar commercial and government contracts developing technology for automotive fuel cells, diesel gensets, compressed air energy storage, high-efficiency oil-free compressors, and solar-thermal power generation and is named on numerous U.S. and International patents. Steve joined Wentworth Institute of Technology in 2012 as a faculty member in the Mechanical Engineering Department and was a co-recipient of the William E. Roberts endowed professorship this previous fall. He worked closely with Stratasys during the introduction of Stratasys’ Global 3D Printing Curriculum and was selected to teach the inaugural course in the U.S. at Wentworth. Most recently, Steve was promoted to the Director of EPIC Learning at Wentworth where he combines his experience in industry and academia to help nurture the growing campus wide culture of innovation taking place at Wentworth. He is also an Ambassador to Wentworth’s Accelerate program which is focused on developing innovation and entrepreneurship amongst its students and is a member of the Institute’s Intellectual Property Committee. Steve holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Design from Syracuse University and Master of Science in General Engineering from Stanford. This is an extraordinary opportunity to acquire first-hand knowledge of Project-Based Learning with 3D Printing while simultaneously exploring these technologies and gaining the valuable hands-on experience necessary to properly execute and incorporate them into your school’s S.T.E.M. curriculum. We look forward to seeing you at WPI on March 2nd! More Details and Registration
Stratasys has always been at the front of the 3D printing industry in terms of developing new, never-before-seen technology. For example, in 2014 they broke new ground by introducing the world’s first multi-color, multi-material 3D printer, The Objet 500 Connex3. Since then, multi-color and multi-material printers have been pushing their way into the market, but they’re still not common; whenever a new one is introduced, it tends to draw a fair bit of attention. Stratasys, for their part, has just come out with a new and improved multi-color and multi-material 3D printer in the form of the redesigned Objet Connex3. The Objet Connex3 may be cutting-edge, but newcomers to 3D printing shouldn’t be intimidated – the printer was designed to be simple, accessible and easy to use. “Looking at standard technology adoption curves, there’s normally a tremendous lag between potential and reality. With 3D printing, while the promise might be great, customers are still restricted by both complexity and cost, to a degree,” said Josh Claman, Chief Business Officer at Stratasys. “Stratasys is committed to enabling wide adoption of 3D printing, stimulating unprecedented creativity, new flexibility and dramatic innovation. Now, we’re teaming with Adobe to take this vision additional steps forward, ensuring 3D printing is easier and more attainable. The Objet Connex3 is the only 3D printer on the market with the power to merge multiple materials and colors into one system alongside a highly streamlined and integrated workflow. With greater ease-of-use and an improved price-performance ratio, Stratasys is therefore expanding 3D printing adoption through simplification.” The partnership with Adobe was a major player in the improved features of the Objet Connex3. Adobe 3D Color Print Engine is powering the new Stratasys Creative Colors Software, which introduces new color options and makes the design-to-print process smooth and easy. The software links the Connex3 with Adobe Photoshop CC, and allows for designers to easily detail their color models with textures and patterns. There’s also a much wider color spectrum than before, with gradient color palettes. Currently, the Objet Connex3 is the only printer on the market to be integrated with Adobe Color Management software. “Partnering with Adobe, a world leader in creative software products, aligns with Stratasys’ vision to make the color 3D printing experience as simple, powerful and rewarding as possible. The integration of Objet Connex3 with Stratasys Creative Colors Software and the resulting explosion of color possibilities is an important milestone in fulfilling this vision,” said Dan Yalon, EVP Business Development, Strategy and Vertical Solutions, Stratasys. “Furthermore, our relationship with Adobe not only continues to push the envelope of 3D printed realism, it also promotes our goal to make 3D printing more accessible, bringing enhanced color solutions to new important communities, such as Adobe’s creative designers.” On an additional note, Stratasys has also added two new materials to their Rigid Opaque material for Objet Connex3. Vero PureWhite is 20 percent brighter and more UV-resistant than standard VeroWhite, and VeroCyan has been improved to be brighter and more vibrant.
Help your Students Take Their Ideas Further… Discover Some Cost Effective Techniques for Creating Realistic Prototypes, Molds, Functional Machines & More. Desktop 3D printing has had a dramatic impact on how students learn. But the value of 3D printing doesn’t necessarily end with the print. With a little extra work, you can create highly realistic prototypes, packaging, molds, and even functional machines – all at a fraction of the cost of traditional manufacturing methods. By learning and demonstrating post processing techniques, educators are able to help their students achieve professional results. Tune in 12/13 at 2PM EST for a special presentation from MakerBot about how a 3D print can be an aesthetically realistic prototype, a mold for an end-use product, a functional machine or device, and much more. Click Here to Register
Grab CAD, Stratasys, and AET Labs are pleased to announce the 3rd Annual New England Semi Finals of the Extreme Redesign 3-D Printing Challenge at WPI, on March 14th 2017. This is a “People’s Choice” event honoring New England students who are entering GrabCAD’s 2017 challenge, giving them a chance to compete locally. This year’s winner will bring home a MakerBot 3D printer! Along with this annual competition, we will be hosting the 2017 Digital Fabrication Technologies Showcase. Demonstrations & mini workshops will be on-site, along with a special keynote address from one of the country’s leading STEM influencers, that will motivate teacher’s and students alike. We invite all New England education professionals to come see the leading digital fabrication technologies for 2017 – 3D printers, 3D scanners, Lasers, CNC machinery & more – in action! Click here for details. Registration is now open!
Enjoy all the benefits of the new Replicator+ and save $379 on our new professional filament bundle. Now when you purchase the Replicator+ with any MakerCare Protection Plan, you will receive the Slate Gray MakerBot Tough PLA Bundle for free. The bundle will ship separately from your printer. Offer starts December 10th, 2016 at 12:00 a.m. EST and ends December 25th, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Click Here To View Offer Details
How do you take a basic 3D print and turn it into a lesson on advanced manufacturing, prototyping, & production concepts? Better yet, one that is easily replicated by students as young as middle school? That’s the question some New England tech instructors came to AET Labs on Tuesday to explore. MakerBot’s Camil Touimi joined us from headquarters in Brooklyn, and led a hands-on post processing Makers Workshop on “How to Create a Silicone Mold around 3D Printed Masters.” This was a fun professional development opportunity for our team to break-in our new training center, and for attendees to learn a versatile, real-world technique to share in their classroom. Silicone molding is a powerful production method which when combined with 3D printing can: Allow you to make several copies of one product Create a product in a material that isn’t supported by your 3D printer Touimi took the class step-by-step through the process of taking a 3D printed part, mixing the right ratio of components for creating the silicone base, assembling the mold in a way that avoids air bubbles or inconsistencies from forming, and showed how to properly mix the classroom-safe resins which were purchased via Amazon. (Side note: Tasker Smith, student mentor at MIT’s Pappalardo Labs, recommended Reynolds Industries of Brighton for any instructors looking for a source from which to purchase larger quantities of mixers.) The PD course included materials as well as a lesson plan & STL files that educators can bring back to their classrooms. Actively participating in making a mold really helped demonstrate how the applications for this method are endless, whether you are teaching engineering or the arts. In addition to creating a reusable mold, attendees were given a demonstration of the MakerBot replicator in action. AET President and Senior Technology Consultant, Dave Kempskie also showed the group how GrabCAD Print empowers teachers to manage their student’s work-flow with a single, open, cloud-based environment for job preparation, scheduling and monitoring. Explaining how easy, and intuitive the software is to use, Dave highlighted how it enables students to troubleshoot their CAD designs for 3D printing with an error detection and repair tool. The day also proved to be a great networking opportunity, and forum for educators to share ideas, resources and successes they’ve had in their classrooms. Thanks to all who participated! We’re looking forward to hosting Part II of this workshop in the near future, and helping instructors further expand on their 3D printing craftsmanship skills. Stay tuned!
AET’s 3rd annual Digital Fabrication Technology Showcase is fast approaching! New England educators are invited to learn how integrating digital fabrication technology into their school’s curriculum can promote design-thinking and innovation. This year’s showcase at the WPI Campus in Worcester, will feature a series of interactive Learning Labs to demonstrate the latest in digital fabrication machines & tools and their applications for education including: 3D Printers Laser Cutting & Engraving Machines 3D Scanning Devices Desktop Wire Benders CNC & More In what will prove to be a highlight of the event, educators will have one of the first chances to see the new Stratasys F370 demonstrated! Part of Stratasys’ F123 series, this machine combines powerful FDM technology with design-to-print GrabCAD software for the most versatile and intelligent solution available. Just entering the realm of 3D printing? Incredible ease of use with both the hardware and the software means you don’t need special 3D printing expertise. That said, the fact that it’s simple to use doesn’t mean you’re getting “basic” quality and features! The F123 series delivers engineering-grade quality and repeatability, unparalleled at it’s price point. Each of the 3 models accepts up to four different materials, in 10 different colors, to support a wide range of prototyping and tooling applications. These are machines built for heavy workload and ability to streamline workflow in the busiest of FabLabs. This series of 3D printers will enable your student designers and engineers to rapidly go from from design concept to functional prototype in a fraction of the time, compared with traditional prototyping methods. The result: more time for engaged learning time and student production. We hope you take the chance to see this BMW designed model “live” at this year’s showcase! Along with the showcase we are pleased to present the following presentations from experts in Digital Fabrication, Engineering and Design: Keynote Presentation: Digital Fabrication & the Quest for Maker Mastery Tasker Smith, Technical Instructor in MIT’s Pappalardo Undergraduate Laboratories How digital fabrication tools help makers in their design process by encouraging free iteration and driving design-thinking? What Does the Future of 3D Printing in Education Look Like? Jesse Roitenberg, National Education Sales Manager – Stratasys Learn about the latest trends and how 3D printing is continuing to shape the next generation of students, throughout the world. 3D Printing & Preparing Students for Industry 4.0 Shuvom Ghose, GrabCAD Engineer As we stick our toe into the fourth Industrial Revolution, what part does 3D printing & software play and how can we prep our students to enter the workforce? Along with the showcase, we’ll also present the People’s Choice awards for New England students entering the local semi-finals of the Extreme Redesign 3D Challenge. This year, students will compete to win a MakerBot Replicator of their own! Interested in attending or entering your students to compete? Click here for details and registration!
And how 3D printing can help STEAM students to learn from their mistakes. Persistence. Resilience. Flexibility. These are the current buzzwords in education, and they particularly complement the STEAM education model. Fact based learning and leading students to the “right” answer was the mainstream model of the year’s past. Let’s face it, children today are growing up in the Google era where facts are at their fingertips. While learning to find a correct answer backed up by cut and dry facts certainly has an important place ineducation, leading kids to investigate the “whys” and “hows” of learning is increasingly becoming of greater importance. When schools free up the stigma of getting the answer “wrong” they encourage a growth mindset in students, encouraging them to reach out, question, and find the answers. This permission to fail needs to be a key component in our national education system in order to encourage future innovators and problem solvers. Albert Einstein famously said, “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” A modern advocate of failure, inventor James Dyson noted “I made 5,127 prototypes of my vacuum before I got it right. There were 5,126 failures. But I learned from each one. That’s how I came up with a solution. So I don’t mind failure.” As our country strives to more strength as a leader in innovation & industry, we need to foster a similar motto within our schools as those STEM exemplars had. An axiom that drives innovative thinking and persistence in our future workforce. STEAM Programs & Makerspaces Encouraging Innovative Thinking in Classroom Thankfully, through STEAM initiatives and grants schools nationwide are being encouraged to equip the classrooms of even our youngest kids with technology that exposes them to the design & manufacturing process. 3D printers can be used to take students ideas and actualize them in a way that was until recently never feasible. In industry, iteration and failed attempts are accepted parts of the process of design and method improvement. Students need to be taught that this is natural and acceptable part of life and work – accepting failure, learning from it, and moving on towards improvement. At this year’s AET Lab’s 3rd annual Extreme Redesign 3D Challenge: New England Semi Finals we are celebrating & awarding students who “love to fail.” Cohosted by GrabCAD, and based on their worldwide 3D design challenge, this event honors New England secondary school students who strive to “Make it Better.” Fledgling engineers and designers are challenged to take an existing product and improve it using 3D printing. The winner this year will take home their own MakerBot 3D printer! Our featured speaker last year, Steve Chomyszak, is a faculty member at Wentworth Institute of Technology and key contributor to the development of Stratasys’ Global 3D Printing Curriculum. His presentation on “Project-Based Learning with 3D Printing” highlighted the need to encourage failure and persistence in today’s STEM students. He explained why 3D printing is a featured piece in the equation to teaching students this skill. “3D printing encourages you to screw up and have fun doing it. Iteration is at your fingertips, and iteration is good for learning,” said Chomyszak during his presentation to students. “Don’t be afraid […]
AET Labs would like to express our wholehearted appreciation to all who attended this year’s Extreme Redesign Challenge: New England Semifinals and Digital Fabrication Showcase – especially in view of our “Extreme” weather reschedule! To our student competitors – Not only were your designs impressive, but your outstanding presentations got rave reviews from all in attendance. The overwhelming sentiment was how extremely difficult it was to choose the winners! Thank you for being an inspiration to the education community to invest in this technology that encourages student innovation and the ability to prototype at such a professional level! Big congrats to our student champs! 1st place: Arlington High School Team: Linglong Le, Ben Coley, Ionis Kutrolli, & Anastasia Goulopoulos (not pictured) for their “Aerodynamically Superior Drone” 2nd place: Dylan Desrosiers – for his “Efficient Aero-Elastic Flutter Energy Harvester” 3rd place: Pentucket Regional’s Jake Picariello, Patrick Reardon, and Brendon Lincoln for their “Standard Aluminum Soda Can with Re-Sealable Top” Enjoy the new MakerBot Replicator Arlington! And congrats to our raffle winner, Wendell Oppewall who traveled all the way from the Mt. Desert Island, Maine school district! We’re confident that the new MakerBot will be an exciting addition to your community’s STEM programs. Thank you to MakerBot for contributing such a generous gift! What a treat it was to have Tasker Smith, instructor & mentor at the MIT Pappalardo Labs, as our keynote speaker! Tasker began his presentation on “Digital Fabrication and the Quest for Maker Mastery” by showing a fun video from Nokia featuring Bruce Lee waging a ping-pong battle single-handedly against a professional team, using a set of nunchucks. This amusingly illustrated how unconventional thought processes are the key to the most innovative (and successful!) designs. A giant shout out of thanks to Tasker for acting as our Digital Fabrication “Sifu” at the event! Our imaginations were certainly sparked to think outside-the-box and savvily wield digital fabrication tools and open-source resources in a way that saves time, energy and materials. Thank you to Ryan Hayford of Stratasys for stepping in last minute to present! We enjoyed hearing such vivid examples of how 3D printing is expanding what’s possible in education. It’s inspiring to see how this technology has quickly opened the way for students of all ages to learn advanced, real-world STEM applications, and even out-of-this-world applications in conjunction with NASA. It was made abundantly clear how important it is that students learn 3D printing -now – as it is securely on the path to being a keystone of future manufacturing. We appreciate having Shuvom Ghose from GrabCAD on hand to give a motivating Ted Talk inspired presentation helping us to see how 3D printing is helping to prepare students to keep pace in the Industry 4.0 workplace! We enjoyed seeing how students & educators from around the world are able to collaborate seamlessly together in the design process, managing and printing their 3D STL files with GrabCAD. Not without mention, the GrabCAD team really knocked our socks off with […]
There’s much talk these days about how “soft skills” are growing to be just as important than academic, technical skills for career success. The beauty of learning in a Fab Lab? You’ll acquire both! Here are five important “life-ready” skills students will learn in a Fab Lab: Resilience With 3D printing, Laser Cutting & Engraving, 3D Scanning, and CNC technology available at the ready students are able to tinker with designs and programs and make prototypes quickly and easily. This is a shift from the linear design approach of the past, that assumed that mistakes were expensive and need to be avoided. Failure becomes just a natural part of the process. This growth mindset allows kids the confidence to bounce right back from their design errors, and the liberty to learn from their mistakes. Altruism & Collaboration One of the Fab Lab charter values states “designs and processes developed in fab labs…should remain available for individuals to use and learn from.” This core principle of sharing helps foster an environment of giving to others in the community & collaborating together to make a difference. This “Sharing is Caring” outlook promotes a collective objective to improve other’s lives, through design and accessibility. Having 3D printers readily available encourages students to design and make custom solutions – on the spot – to provide help for challenges classmates and neighbors may face. Manufacturing & Lean Production What used to be only feasible in an apprenticeship or specialized vocational school, can now be taught in a Fab Lab. Access to a Fab Lab enables students to learn advanced manufacturing concepts and skills before they enter the workplace. With everything you need at your fingertips, Fab Lab users can learn to take a new idea all the way through the process of mechanical design, engineering, prototyping – even marketing it to be sold. Managing workflow in a Fab Lab teaches real-world manufacturing concepts that are applicable in today’s Industry 4.0 workplaces. “Design Thinking” & Process Design Thinking is a mindset and approach to learning, collaboration, and problem-solving. A Fab Lab is the perfect environment for cultivating design thinking in students. Like water and sunlight to plants, design mentoring paired with digital fabrication tools help students grow to thoughtfully engage in the design process. Good coaching provides students with the design vocabulary to communicate their ideas, along with the encouragement to engage in reflective and retrospective thinking about their process. The ultimate reward? Students ideas can actually come to life. Flexibility & Foresight What will the future of work & education look like? We’ve heard it said that “the most important skill to learn as you enter the job market is the ability to learn new skills.” There are many uncertainties, but the given is that jobs of the future will require versatility and an adaptable mindset. When students collaborate in a Fab Lab they learn to quickly adapt to technology and seek solutions to evolving challenges. Students in STEM programs with access to a Fab […]
Chances are if you were to give your savvy students a product to critique they would quickly assess it and think “I can make this better”, and they’d probably be right! Why not harness that “making” enthusiasm into an engineering design learning opportunity? Extreme Redesign is a global quest sponsored by Stratasys and GrabCAD that challenges students to invent, innovate or improve something by re-engineering it to be printed in 3D. Categories in engineering, art, architecture and jewelry are open to all secondary and post-secondary students. All enrires must be submitted via STL files through the official GrabCAD portal by February 28, 2018. For more details or to register click here. Past area secondary winning projects include: · Underwater Hotel – Fairfield Ludlowe HS, CT · HUNCH 2015 Zero-Gravity Scale – Tri-County Regional, MA · Zero-Gravity Mixer – Tri-County Regional, MA AET Labs is pleased to announce we will once again be hosting our New England Extreme Redesign Semi-Finals & Digital Fabrication Showcase at WPI in May*. Stay tuned for a “save the date” announcement and further details coming inJanuary! *Although we do not require formal entry submissions for our regional competition it is required for advancement in the global portion of the challenge and therefore strongly encouraged.
PRESS RELEASE – Popular Science Names Desktop Metal Production System “2017 Best of What’s New” in Engineering OCT 17 2017—BURLINGTON, Mass. Highlighting its speed and inkjet technology, Popular Science recognized the Desktop Metal Production System™ with its “2017 Best of What’s New” award in the Engineering category. The Production System is the first metal 3D printing system for mass production of complex metal parts that is up to 100 times faster than current laser systems. Arriving in 2018, the Production System delivers the speed, quality, and cost-per-part needed to compete with traditional manufacturing processes. Created by the inventors of ground-breaking technologies in both 3D and 2D printing – binder jetting by Ely Sachs and single pass inkjet by Paul Hoisington – the Production System builds metal parts in a matter of minutes instead of hours. Leveraging low-cost Metal Injection Molding (MIM) powder, it is designed to deliver high throughput and per-part costs that are competitive with traditional manufacturing processes—up to 20x lower than today’s laser-based additive manufacturing systems. “The Best of What’s New awards honor the innovations that shape the future,” says Joe Brown, Editor in Chief, Popular Science. “From life-saving technology to incredible space engineering to gadgets that are just breathtakingly cool, this is the best of what’s new.” Desktop Metal, the company committed to making metal 3D printing accessible to manufacturers and engineers, recently launched its metal 3D printing systems covering the full product lifecycle — from prototyping to mass production. The Studio System™ is the first office-friendly metal 3D printing system for rapid prototyping and is up to 10 times less expensive than existing technology today. To manufacture metal 3D printed parts at scale, Desktop Metal also debuted the only 3D printing system for mass production of high resolution metal parts today, the Production System. About Desktop Metal Desktop Metal, Inc., based in Burlington, Massachusetts, is accelerating the transformation of manufacturing with end-to-end metal 3D printing solutions. Founded in 2015 by leaders in advanced manufacturing, metallurgy, and robotics, the company is addressing the unmet challenges of speed, cost, and quality to make metal 3D printing an essential tool for engineers and manufacturers around the world. In 2017, the company was selected as one of the world’s 30 most promising Technology Pioneers by World Economic Forum, and was recently named to MIT Technology Review’s list of 50 Smartest Companies. For more information, visit www.desktopmetal.com.
Originally published by Stratasys, a global leader in applied additive manufacturing. AET Labs is happy to serve the New England education community as a Stratasys partner. High-Level Learners In 2011, Marlborough High School (MHS) in Massachusetts established their STEM Early College High School program after receiving a grant from the U.S. DOL and the Massachusetts Department of Education. The goal? Develop students’ critical thinking skills by offering a higher level of interdisciplinary learning on state-of-the-art equipment. “What we’ve started to understand is the American workforce, especially in the high-skill industry sectors, is dwindling. In order to change that, we have to change the way we’re educating students,” said Dan Riley, Director, Marlborough Public Schools, STEM Early College High School. Student Driven The specialized STEM curriculum at MHS immerses students in a rigorous learning experience, providing them with the skills essential for college and career readiness. MHS STEM students develop creativity, critical thinking, effective communication and strong collaboration skills through project-based learning and advanced classroom technology, including several uPrint™ 3D Printers. Paul Duplessis, the engineering and technical drawing instructor, pushes STEM students to develop their design and problem solving skills by thinking creatively. “The transformation of students’ work can be remarkable, giving them a feeling of real ownership for the development of their design,” said Duplessis. STEM students are challenged to innovate using their skills in CAD, 3D printing, robotics and engineering to design projects that often must move, rotate or light up. “I like to see the excitement as students test and solve engineering problems, redesign projects and test again to find the proper solution. This really is the ultimate in student-driven learning with hands-on, project-based investigation that leads to solutions,” said Duplessis. Linking STEM Across Disciplines Not only does the engineering program incorporate 3D printing, math and English STEM classes have also found ways to bolster curriculum with it. “When I started teaching the STEM English curriculum, I wanted to incorporate as many of the skills they’re learning in their engineering class as possible,” said Lindsay Shomphe, MHS English teacher. “Nowadays, everything is skills based, so it’s not ‘did you read this book,’ it’s ‘did you learn how to write a research paper, did you learn about analysis and characterization?’ I teach those same skills, just in a little different way.” Shomphe weaves 3D printing into teaching classics like “Julius Cesar” by having STEM students design and 3D print models of the Globe Theatre, one component of a larger research project. She also teaches the play, “A Raisin in the Sun,” and has students create and print character symbols, adding another layer to the development of their characterization skills. By working 3D printing into her curriculum, Shomphe not only helps bolster the STEM program, she often inspires students not in STEM to get involved. “It is neat to see kids who weren’t a part of the STEM classes getting excited about 3D printing and asking questions,” said Shomphe. “When they’re not in the program and they think it must […]
On Thursday, February 15, 2018 Minuteman High School in Lexington, MA unveiled its highly-anticipated new Advanced Manufacturing Lab to students, members of local industry and a host of invited dignitaries including Massachusetts Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, State Representatives Kate Hogan, Denise Garlick and Jay Kaufman, State Senator Richard Ross and Assistant Secretary for Career Education Bob LePage. The state-of-the-art facility, made possible thanks to two Massachusetts Skills Capital Grants totaling nearly $1 million, enabled Minuteman to purchase Stratasys and MakerBot 3D printers, an Epilog Laser Engraver, Creaform 3D scanner, Festo CNC lathes and milling machines along with sophisticated measuring and other highly-specialized training equipment. “This is essential for Massachusetts,” Lt. Governor Polito said. “We’re known as the number one innovation economy in the country. You are on the cutting edge of something really amazing and our administration is committed to ensuring students are equipped with the proper tools for success.” The Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant, founded by the Baker-Polito administration, is designed to train high school students and adults in high-wage, high-demand jobs in the advanced manufacturing field. In collaboration with the UMass Lowell School of Engineering, Minuteman will also utilize the new lab to offer after-school advanced manufacturing courses for adults. AET Labs’ Mark Lyons, who also chairs the Advanced Manufacturing Program Advisory Committee, commenced the ceremony with a moment of silence honoring the victims and families of the Parkland, FL school tragedy before turning the mic over to Rep. Kaufman who applauded the school for creating new programs to meet a 21st-century workplace. “Minuteman has a well-deserved reputation for being ahead of the curve and stands out as a really exceptional place”, praised Rep. Kaufman. The Lt. Governor cheerfully accepted an keepsake featuring the Minuteman logo, engraved on an Epilog Laser system, while Superintendent Bouquillon was presented with an Official Citation from the Massachusetts Legislature. “Money does make a difference, especially in vocational education, where our students need to learn on the latest equipment, so they have the skills employers are looking for”, Dr. Bouquillon said. Thanking state officials for providing the funds to implement the Advanced Manufacturing Lab he promised Minuteman would continue applying for additional grants to support future modernization efforts. The Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant has awarded over $38 million in grants to 124 institutions in two years, helping schools strengthen relationships with local industry and giving students a distinct advantage upon entering the workforce.
Ask your students this: What if we could design objects that evolve and adapt to inclement weather instead of fracturing? The AET Labs team is thrilled to announce Skylar Tibbits, founder of the Self-Assembly Lab at MIT, as this year’s keynote speaker at Dig It. Fab It. Make It., May 3rd at WPI. In this prestigious laboratory, objects in 3D come to life, evolve, adapt to their environment and assemble themselves in contact with water, wind, heat and other terrestrial phenomena. Honored with multiple distinctions, Skylar is the inventor of 4D printing and a noted TED Talk fellow. Tibbits’ research focuses on self-assembly and programmable material technologies for novel manufacturing, products and construction processes. Currently a Research Scientist in MIT’s Department of Architecture, he teaches graduate and undergraduate design studios and co-teaches “How to Make (Almost) Anything”, a seminar at MIT’s Media Lab. If the TED Talks below are any indication, the Dig It. Fab It. Make It. audience is in for a treat this year! (Haven’t registered yet? Click Here to Register for New England’s Premiere Fab Lab Expo for Education)
Last week Dig It. Fab It. Make It. attendees were inspired by forward-thinking presenters, student designers and educators at the forefront of the digital fabrication movement. It’s impossible to choose one highlight so let’s break the day down: “Today we program computers and machines. Tomorrow we program matter itself” Skylar Tibbits captivated the audience with his insights on the magical power of programmable matter and the emerging ability to print biomimetically with 4D printing. Tibbits, the inventor of 4D printing, opened our eyes to a future reality where programming matter itself is as commonplace as programming today’s computers and machines. 4D printing is defined as “the fabrication of objects through the deposition of a material using a print head, nozzle, or other printer technology where the objects contain one or more additional design dimension, such as material gradation over distance or direction, response or adaptation over time, etc.” We especially enjoyed Skylar’s visionary outlook on the positive environmental impact adaptive, self-assembling architecture and design will have. The potential benefits range from cutting down waste, to reducing the carbon footprint of making and shipping objects by enabling designs to ship flat and grow into origami-like shapes, to creating clothing and footwear that adapt according to the environment. Want to hear more? Check out this interview of Skylar from Fast Company media on his vision for 4D printing in the future. Heartwarming evidence of the upward climb of females in the field of engineering as they are propelled forward with access to 3D printing technology Gina Scala, Stratasys’ Director of Global Marketing for Education, presented stories from across the world of women and girls who are making notable strides in the STEM field using 3DP to innovate and inspire. What’s more, the evidence was right in the room – we were so pleased to see that nearly half of the student innovators this year were young women! Want more? Gina provided us with this “Top 10 3D Printing Resource Guide for Educators” courtesy of Stratasys. Best in Show? An ACL Dog Brace for Izzy takes the New England Extreme Redesign Grand Prize! Emily Stys made Pentucket Regional High School proud with her winning ACL dog brace design. Born from a real-world problem, Emily was motivated by a desire to help her teacher’s dog Izzy heal from a debilitating ACL injury. Evidence showed it clearly worked as Izzy contentedly trotted around the WPI campus like a champ all day! MakerBot’s Chris Franks quipped: “When I saw her project and spoke with her it reminded me of a story that came out of Xavier University and their MakerBot Innovation Center. The community over there rallied around a dog with a leg defect to design and print prosthetic solutions for her. The thing is, I didn’t need to tell Emily this story. Not only had she heard the story but had visited Xavier and spent time at the MakerBot Innovation Center. It was that experience and the presence of the technology that […]
AET Labs recently had the pleasure of hosting a bright young intern and budding engineer from Masconomet Regional High School here at our Essex, MA headquarters. Senior Tori LeClair came to us in early April bringing with her a sharp mind, a sweet disposition and an eagerness to learn about digital fabrication and the design process. Diving right in to the fab lab world, Tori began her hands-on training 3D printing student phone case designs for the Massachusetts Skills USA Additive Manufacturing Competition using our F370 from the Stratasys Design Series. Next Tori designed a sleek original trophy which would later be presented to the winners of AET’s annual New England Extreme Redesign 3D Printing Challenge. Drawing inspiration from Thingiverse, she came up with an innovative model of a moving gear on a pedestal. After several iterations and a half-scale prototype printed on a MakerBot Replicator she was able to bring the final product to life on the Stratasys Objet Pro, a little post-processing, and voila, three very cool trophies! The following week Tori was introduced to what would quickly became her favorite digital fabrication tool – the Epilog Laser System. She caught the laser bug and went wild designing a wooden ballot box, AET gear logo magnet giveaways, coasters, a letter holder, her laptop, sports memorabilia, her dad’s phone case and the acrylic face of a clock she designed using the DIWire Bender Pro. She became so adept with the laser system we assigned her to single-handedly man the Epilog station at Dig it. Fab it. Make it. where she gave demos and interacted with over 200 educators from across New England like a seasoned pro! Tori deftly managed each task put to her, mastering a multitude of new applications, software programs and techniques and quickly became an asset to the AET team. Following graduation, she plans to attend North Shore Community College in the fall and then transfer to an engineering program to finish her degree. When asked what’s on tap for the summer she replied, “I will be doing a lot of relaxing, taking a robotics class, working on cars with my dad, skeet shooting with my grandfather and relaxing some more!” Tori has been an absolute pleasure to have on board and we wish her all the best, for her future is most assuredly bright! Thank you, Tori!
Ready to make some major gains in your Fab Lab know-how? There’s still time to register for AET Labs’ 2018 Summer Fab Lab Bootcamp for Educators. Join other digital fabrication enthusiasts as we conquer topics like 3D Printing, CNC Wire Bending, Onshape CAD software, 3D Scanning, CorelDraw for Laser Cutting and engraving applications & more! Come for one or come for them all! Bundle courses for a discount. 3 or more courses for $125 each, or $700 for all 7 workshops. Courses & Details: Onshape CAD Bootcamp – 8/1 & 8/2 3D Scanning – From Capture to Completion – 8/7 5 Essential Applications in CNC Wire Bending – 8/8 Advanced 3D Printing Applications with Stratasys – 8/9 Using Corel Draw with your Laser – 8/14 Advanced Laser Engraving & Cutting Applications – 8/15 Using VCarve Pro with your CNC Router – 8/16 Register early to reserve your spot!
The Stars Align for Learning Center at Linwood Mill Suddenly, significantly, amid the most oppressive heat of early summer and after years of fits and starts, arrives the refreshing news that the “Blackstone Valley Education Hub” at the Linwood Mill on the Mumford River will indeed finally burst onto the scene. “We even have a logo!” Jeannie Hebert, the irrepressible president and CEO of the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce, said the afternoon of July 2 in confirming that a learning center dedicated to preparing students for work in various aspects of manufacturing is earmarked for “a soft opening at the beginning of September;” and that “there is interest from the governor’s office” as that milestone moment is celebrated. Gathered with Ms. Hebert for a meeting at which a firming up of specifics for the Blackstone Valley Education Hub was discussed were State Rep. Jeffrey N. Roy, Mark Lyons and Stasia E. Peters. Mr. Roy represents Massachusetts’ 10th Norfolk District (Franklin and Medway); Mr. Lyons is a technical advisor with AET Labs in Essex who possesses expertise in “career and technical labs, engineering education labs and digital fabrication labs;” Ms. Peters is the career and technical education director in the Dighton-Rehoboth Regional School District in Attleboro. Realization of the objective of establishing what has transitioned into a trade-centric educational entity in the Blackstone Valley dates at least to the legislative days of former State Sen. Richard T. “Dick” Moore, who secured $350,000 as seed money for a satellite campus of Quinsigamond Community College in the region. Mr. Moore was first elected in 1996 and served nine terms, representing the WorcesterNorfolk district. Another Moore—Sen. Michael O. Moore of the 2nd Worcester District (no relation)—is now the lead person on nursing the Hub into being. Rep. David K. Muradian Jr. of the 9th Worcester District, Sen. Ryan Fattman (who succeeded Dick Moore in the 18th Worcester District seat) and Rep. Roy are Sen. Mike Moore’s cohorts on Beacon Hill in this initiative. As chair of the Legislature’s manufacturing caucus, Rep. Roy is entitled to the enthusiasm he voices for creation of the Blackstone Valley Education Hub. “When I heard about this I couldn’t wait to get out and see for myself,” he said. “There are tens of thousands of jobs in the offing. We have an Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative in the state, which will be renewed. The goal is to make Massachusetts the No. 1 state in the country for manufacturing.” On a recent bicycle ride through the area, Rep. Roy said, “I saw a number of sandwich boards in front of businesses,” advertising employment opportunities. As a further incentive for his involvement in development of the Hub, he said “my grandfather lived at [nearby] Maple Ct. and worked at Whitin Machine Works.” In expressing similar sentiments, Ms. Hebert said “every year about 650 students can’t get into Blackstone Valley Tech, and 3500 can’t get into vocational schools across the state. That’s every year. These kids need a leg up.” Her father […]
Anyone can start a CrossFit-style exercise program on their own and hope to see results. More often than not, those who go it alone lose steam and fail to progress, or even get hurt in the process. Professional training and tips from a certified coach, along with encouragement and personal experience from fellow CrossFitters help take results to the next level. Learning to master digital fabrication tools is really no different. A little coaching goes a long way when implementing a program. During the first half of August we were happy to host our 1st annual 7-day Summer Fab Lab Bootcamp at the beautiful Minuteman High School campus in Lexington, MA. 85 instructors from 5 New England states took advantage of the opportunity to learn pro tips and tricks in an immersive environment, with coaching from our Technology Consultants. It’s always gratifying to see the interchange of ideas between teachers during our workshops and events – the collective enthusiasm to share these new digital fabrication technologies with students is extremely motivating to all involved! A big thank you to all our participants for enriching the session with valuable input from your own experiences – both triumphs and failures. Our team hopes the training you received will help start each participant’s school year off on the right foot – confident, warmed up and ready to go! Check out some highlights from our social channels below: Day One & Two: Onshape CAD Day one of @Onshape#CAD boot camp with @BHSBobcatNews, @smalumni, @cascobayhs, @profileschoolnh, @IAcharterschool, @MHSPPAL, @MarshfieldSuper, and @YarmouthHS. #STEM#education#professionaldevelopmentpic.twitter.com/6NHxxw2yuf — AET Labs (@AETLabs) August 1, 2018 Day Three: 3D Scanning Applications for the Classroom Our friends from @IAcharterschool & @YarmouthHS are good sports. Having some #3dscan fun with the new @Creaform ACADEMIA scanner. pic.twitter.com/UwcPWgc72T — AET Labs (@AETLabs) August 2, 2018 Day Four: Advanced 3D Printing Applications #SummerFabLabBootcamp Day 4: A little @Stratasys show-and-tell to start the morning session of today’s Advanced #3Dprinting class. pic.twitter.com/XulG6xWLUq — AET Labs (@AETLabs) August 9, 2018 Day Five: Using CorelDraw with your Laser #fabLab Boot Camp Day 5 Using @CorelDRAW with @EpilogLaser. With @QuinnipiacU @MinutemanHS @NorthbridgePS @nashobarsd @berwickacademy @BowdoinCollege @AssabetValley @GrLowellTech_HS @BHSBobcatNews @MHSPPAL @dartmouth @EssexNorthShore @belmontday1927 #STEMeducation #Laser #CAD pic.twitter.com/1SQi3HULck — AET Labs (@AETLabs) August 14, 2018 Day Six: Advanced Laser Cutting and Engraving Applications What have you made on your @epiloglaser lately? We enjoyed a fun Fab Lab Bootcamp session with #STEM instructors last week learning Advanced #lasercutting and #engraving techniques using @corel.draw ➡️ Swipe for more! . . #fablabfresh #digitalfabricationmovement #backtoschool #aetlabs #makersmovement #newenglandtech A post shared by AET Labs (@aetlabs) on Aug 23, 2018 at 6:20pm PDT Day Seven: VCarve Pro for CNC Routing Day 7 if our Summer Fab Lab #Bootcamp for #STEM instructors underway! Learning to carve with CNC routers using @vectricltd software. What a series it’s been! Now it’s time for #backtoschool to use all these new skills and coach those students. 💪🏻 . . . #digitalfabrication #cnceducation #fablab #woodworking A post shared by […]
On September 18, 2018 Massachusetts’ Blackstone Valley region celebrated the long-anticipated opening of the Blackstone Valley Education Hub (BV Ed Hub) in grand fashion. The ambitious project, which has been in the works for nearly two decades, aims to equip area students with highly-sought-after advanced manufacturing skills to meet local industry demands. The BV Ed Hub alliance, spearheaded by the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce’s President and CEO Jeannie Hebert, along with the BVCC and Massachusetts Central Workforce Board will bring quality technical education training to students from Quinsigamond Community College, Worcester State University, Nichols College, Ben Franklin Institute of Technology, Uxbridge High School, Northbridge High School and Grafton Job Corps. Huge win for the Blackstone Valley yesterday with the opening of the new advanced manufacturing #education hub. #SkillsCapitalGrant @MassLtGov@AETLabs @Stratasys @Onshape @EpilogLaser @PensaLabs @Creaform @UxbHSPrincipal @The_BVCC @Quinsig @SpartanStem https://t.co/OslaxLEmCb — AET Labs (@AETLabs) September 19, 2018 In addition to the generous support from local industry and educational institutions, the BV Ed Hub received close to $500,000 in funding from Governor Charlie Baker’s popular Skills Capital Grant Program which was used to renovate space in the historic Linwood Avenue mill and purchase state-of the-art digital fabrication equipment to provide students with real-world industry experience. On hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony was Lt. Governor Karyn Polito who praised the Blackstone Valley community for their vision and commitment. Having played a major role in the American Industrial Revolution, the Blackstone Valley’s manufacturing roots run deep and this investment in its future workforce will go far to strengthen the local economy and give students a competitive edge upon entering the workforce. Ms. Polito spent the afternoon touring the facility and engaging in lively conversation with area educators, students and industry representatives discussing the various technologies and their applications. Topping the list of favorites was the Stratasys Continuous Build 3D printing system featuring Onshape CAD software, the Epilog Laser cutter and engraver, D.I. Wire’s CNC wire bender and the Creaform 3D scanner which the Lt. Governor experienced up-close and personal as she graciously sat and had her head scanned for a future bobble head. Other honored guests at the packed event included: State Sen. Michael Moore, former Sen. Richard Moore, U.S. Rep. James McGovern and Bob LePage, Assistant Secretary for Career Education. The ceremony concluded with Ms. Hebert applauding AET Labs’ own Mark Lyons for his tremendous contribution to the project praising his capabilities, guidance and expertise – great job, Mark! Check out a few social media highlights from the ribbon cutting below! View this post on Instagram Thrilled to see the very real impact of our #SkillsCapital grant program here at the new Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce Education Hub. This is truly a culmination of so many years of hard work by a number of people and organizations. These grants help strengthen relationships between institutions and local industry, which gives students a leg-up when they begin their careers. Our young people are receiving the training, knowledge, and […]
AET Labs is delighted to announce the return of Dig it. Fab it. Make it. for 2019. Educators from across New England are invited to join AET Labs and our co-hosts Stratasys and GrabCAD on May 17th from 9:00 – 2:00 for this year’s Fab Lab & Makerspace Expo for Education at WPI. We have the utmost respect and admiration for you, our fearless STEM education leaders, and delight in giving back just a bit each spring with this fun, complimentary day of of professional development. If you’ve never attended Dig it. Fab it. Make it., then you’re in for a treat! We pair the hottest digital fabrication technology for the classroom with some of the sharpest minds in education alongside a group of ridiculously-bright and talented students for this very special day of STEM innovation, exploration and networking. Back by popular demand this year is our round-table panel and Q&A featuring a fabulous lineup of trailblazing New England STEM instructors. They’ll be sharing their best tips, practices and insights for successfully implementing digital fabrication tools into the classroom to enhance the learning experience for all. Stay tuned for an exciting announcement regarding this year’s panel and distinguished keynote speaker! Spots are still open for students to enter the regional Extreme Redesign 3D Printing Challenge. Students will again present and compete on-site at WPI as individuals and teams for the chance to bring home a MakerBot 3D printer along with serious bragging rights and some very cool swag. In keeping with our new tradition, we’ll again be awarding a second MakerBot 3D Printer to one lucky educator! Will it be you? Click here for details or to register. Click here for a look back at Dig it. Fab it. Make it. 2018. Read more about the New England Extreme Redesign Challenge.