3D printing is poised to transform the world as we know it. Consumer goods will be personalised and produced on demand, while manufacturers will be able to use 3D printing to come up with radical new designs for everyday objects. But how will this happen, and when?
Copyright law will struggle to be relevant for 3D-printed material, according to Joren De Wachter, an intellectual property strategist who advises companies and investors on the best way to use, understand and value the intellectual property of 3D-printed goods.
Scientists at the University of Darmstadt, in Germany, have trapped a pulse of light inside a crystal for a minute, and used it to store an image, raising the possibility of light-based computers that could work faster than today’s electronic processors and transistors.
Dr Phil Reeves, managing director of Econolyst, a global 3D printing consultancy, believes research needs to be coordinated across the EU to push forward 3D printing and give us mass-personalised goods made locally, on demand.
Facial make-up and latex fingers engraved with someone else’s fingerprint used to be enough to fool identification software – but that’s about to change thanks to an EU project which is part of European efforts to beef-up authentication software and network security.
He has advised the EU on its new European Innovation Council.
3D printed catalysts and new propellant types are making rockets more environmentally-friendly.
Species loss needs urgent international action, says Prof. Georgina Mace.